P07383 (i)–(ii) SLIOCH HILLTOP CAIRN/CIRCLING BUZZARDS 1980
Two black and white photographs and letraset mounted on paper, each 46 1/2 × 34 1/4 (118.1 × 87.6)
Purchased from the Waddington Galleries (Grant-in-Aid) 1980
Exh: Art Anglais d'Aujourd'hui (Collection Tate Gallery, Londres), Musée Rath, Geneva, July–September 1980 (7, repr.); Medunarodna Izložba Likovnik Umetnosti Beograd'80, Muzej Savremene Umetnosti, Belgrade, October–December 1980 (Fulton 4)
This account is based on an interview with the artist (May 15 1980). It has been approved by him.
In ‘Slioch Hilltop Cairn/Circling Buzzards’, Fulton has juxtaposed two framed panels which incorporate photographs taken on two separate hill walks in the Western Highlands of Scotland, early in 1980. Meall Copagach, referred to in the left-hand panel, is a hill near Loch Etive, and Slioch is at the south-east end of Loch Maree (Ross and Cromarty).
Fulton walked to the top of both hills and this is emphasised in the way each panel is positioned in relation to the other and by the layout of the text in each; the artist has specified that, when displayed, the panels should be stepped, so that the bottom of the photograph in the left-hand panel, ‘Circling Buzzards’, lines up with the top of the photograph in the panel on the right. On this right-hand panel, above a photograph of a lichen covered boulder, the artist has recorded the location and date of the walk to which it refers, - ‘SLIOCH HILLTOP CAIRN/Scotland 2 March 1980’. In descending order, the remaining text reads CLOUD/SNOW/BOULDERS/PATCHES OF BLUE THROUGH GREY CLOUD/ STREAM/RIVER/LOCH’. The fact that Fulton came upon the boulder he photographed, approximately halfway to the summit, is suggested by the central position of the photograph, with ‘cloud’ above and a ‘loch’ below. ‘PATCHES OF BLUE THROUGH GREY CLOUD’, which is printed directly below the photograph, relates to the cloud-like look of the image and also to the sky on that particular day.
From the photograph in the right-hand panel, the eye is drawn across and up towards the larger photograph in the left panel, which shows the summit of a hill in soft focus. The text above this image, CIRCLING BUZZARDS/MOVING DEER/GUSTING WIND, relates to Fulton's impressions of the landscape he was walking through, suggesting his experience of climbing and arriving on the summit. He told the compiler that the wind affected his camera while he was taking the photograph, and this is reflected in the slightly blurred and grainy image. Below the photograph, under HILLTOP, Fulton has again supplied brief details of the walk to which it is linked ‘Meall Copagach Glen Kinglass by Loch Etive Scotland January 4 1980’.
Like P07382, this work is accompanied by a certificate, signed by the artist, stating that it is the first of an edition of three. The photographs were printed for the artist by Adrian Ensor.
The Tate Gallery 1980-82: Illustrated Catalogue of Acquisitions, London 1984