'ASSEMBLE1' is the first of a series of events to be held during 2021 (May to Oct) relating to our ongoing residency programme and other invited artists.

A contemporary discourse around the role of place, with an emphasis on the lived experience will be developed, drawing connections to many post-industrial urban landscapes and working histories on Edinburgh's peripheries, involving walking, installation, talks and the connecting of neighbourhoods.

'ASSEMBLE1' takes place from 15 MAY to 5 JUNE 2021.

View programme below:

SATS 15 MAY (11am to 2pm) & 22 MAY 2021 (2-5pm)

Peripheri is a two-part exploration of the stretch of coast between Portobello and Granton Harbour inviting a way of walking, on the edge lines of the city, exploring and experiencing the physical effects of long distance walking through an urban environment together. Through peripheral points, places where we may feel unwelcome or disoriented, the walk will ask us - what thrives in the liminal? In these spaces we often find signs of change, historical remnants of old industries as well as new plans being put in place. How do we feel about these impending changes in our landscape? and how do we feel when we are obstructed in our walking? As we walk the coast, the tides pull and release, gifting and taking new and old forms over time. Temporary states exist along the shoreline.

 Peripheri invites participants to engage with boundary sites, observing and reflecting on the transforming interface between land and sea. The walk will draw our attention to sites that are often overlooked and forgotten, and hold the space for responsive activity. Peripheri invites us to realise the creative potential within these spaces of alternatives to the dominant narrative of the city.

In week 1 we will meet at the far west end of Portobello beach (Seafield) and walk the stretch together to Granton Harbour. Pausing at peripheral points, we will map our site responses along the way. During the walk we will stop for lunch and take rest at Newhaven Harbour. Participants will have the opportunity to meet online, via zoom with Stephanie and Elise, during the week to discuss the experience of walking the stretch and share any reflections.

In week 2 we will return to the end point of the first walk. Reconnecting with the site, we will develop ideas and themes uncovered during the walk. Stephanie and Elise will guide gentle intervention and reciprocal activities. Participants will be invited to clear the space, collecting and creating site responsive artworks with found materials to hand on site. We will leave behind our assembled forms, creating an offering and exchange between ourselves and the landscape. By leaving the works, we open them to further interactions within the space, unfolding over time.

About the artists:
Stephanie Whitelaw cultivates through her art practice personal engagements with local landscapes, both physical and digital, encouraging a deeper sense of understanding. Exploring themes of reciprocity, her work explores our dialogue with nature in both urban and rural contexts, through walking, site-responsive art and object making.

Elise Ashby is interested in the fundamentals of drawing – the interaction of materials leaving traces of activity and how this echoes the material relationship between our sensory bodies and our environment; She is interested in how drawing can explore the moral questions we encounter on the basis of existing materially now and historically.

Participants will need: a rucksack, with some extra space to store and carry materials - a packed lunch and water (week 1) - practical shoes/ clothing.

You might also want to bring: A camera A sketchbook (optional)
Something to sit/ kneel on

We will provide: equipment for clearing and gloves for handling materials Max participants: 12 people

*Under-explored areas we journey through may evoke feelings of discomfort. The walk also invites a distance that may be physically demanding for some participants and so we also ask that you are aware of these aspects before signing up.*

Please email Stephanie artnaturecommunity@outlook.com to sign up for the walk and for any more information concerning the walk.


Portobello Kilns, Bridge Street, Portobello, Edinburgh
Open: Sat/Sun 22nd, 23rd, 29th, 30th May - 11am to 4pm
Artist Talk: Sat 29th May, 2pm

During her artist residency which began in 2019, Jenny Pope has been  focussing her research and artworks on the working conditions of the local industries around Portobello's bottle kilns, including the manufacture of prussian blue and the processing of white lead, as well as the clay workers' experiences themselves.

This concluding installation of Jenny's residency draws attention to the interior working space of the kiln, and to the skills and experience required by staff to produce consistent, high quality, saleable ceramic wares. She responds to the once hot smoky atmosphere that the coal fired kiln created and the skills needed in packing and stacking the kiln with heavy saggars and the ultimate experience of the ‘fireman’ who watched over it for the 3 day firing, gauging by eye the correct firing cycle and temperature changes.

Jenny is fascinated by the process of turning wet clay into a permanent useable object and has studied both physics and ceramics, adding to her curiosity and admiration for the workers who were able to judge by eye the temperature before contemporary heat measuring devices were used.

For her installation, she creates two interventions inside the kiln. The first is a ‘Heat-o-meter’; a large constructed device to reference measuring the changing colours of the internal space of the kiln and temperatures associated with the different stages of the firing cycle. The second is the making of thermal insulated heat gloves as a gesture to the hundreds of workers who had to improvise with makeshift wet rags wrapped around their arms and faces to protect themselves whilst unpacking the hot kiln.

Jenny's installation seeks to bring to life a sense of the hot busy environment within the kiln, as we stand there today in a beautifully constructed empty brick chamber and wonder what has gone on in this space before.

(The title ‘heat.work.done.‘ refers to the 1st Law of Thermodynamics as a way of understanding the energy transferred in a given system, in this case the relationship between the temperature reached and the amount of time in the kiln and the effect on the ceramic ware)




Online event: Sun 23rd May, 3pm

In association with the Urban Tree Festival, Annie presents an opportunity to hear all about the Neighbouring Orchard; how it all began, and from some of the growers as part of the project.

Following a residency with Art Walk Projects in 2019 exploring the history of growing fruit trees in coastal Edinburgh, Annie was inspired to continue the tradition with a new community orchard. When the Covid-19 pandemic arose it became clear that a new approach to community growing was needed - one that allowed people to garden at a safe distance but still retain a sense of unified purpose.

With further support from Art Walk Projects, Annie looked to planting apple trees as a way to forge links with people in neighbouring streets and suburbs. What was initially planned to be a small scale project planting around 30 trees, quickly grew as several hundred people responded to a call out. Planted in winter 2020, The Neighbouring Orchard is formed of 120 apple trees grown across public-facing spaces: shared gardens, community spaces, GPs surgeries, respite centres and the front gardens of individual households. Linked together by bees and other pollinators, this individually planted orchard is rooted in community; as the trees grow, bud, blossom and fruit we look forward to a time when we can gather together to enjoy the harvests.




SUN 30 MAY, 11am-1pm

Join Art Walk's founder, Rosy Naylor, with a walk around Portobello's changing urban environment whilst introducing the new 'Walksy.' App.
'Walksy.' (or Walk & See) offers a creative way to record our outdoors whilst we walk. The App will create a library of walks that documents many of the Art Walk's artist led walks as well as collecting user's own walks of their nearby; documenting the 'moments' we experience when we walk, by uploading images, audio and text.

For the launch, Rosy invites participants to walk with her exploring the edges of Western Portobello's changing landscape, from its past working land to new Baileyfield developments, and areas of current industrial land. Recording some of the moments that mark this transition between the old and the new, the walk will touch the edge of where we can and cannot walk, embracing some of the sounds that mark this period of change.

Walk lasts approx 1.5hrs.

The walk starts from the kilns, Bridge Street, Portobello. Max participants: 15 people. The App will be available for download on 30th May.

The 'Walksy.' App is supported by:
Smarter Choices, Smarter Places (Paths for All)
& The National Lottery Community Fund


Footprint Map Project


Sat 5th June, 10am-12noon

a year in the life of Little France Park

Join Craigmillar & Communities Walking Residency artist, Jonathan Baxter, for the next of his monthly walks (the first Sat each month until Dec 2021).

Meet by the Thistle Foundation, Centre of Wellbeing, 13 Queen St, EH16 4EA. The walk is wheelchair accessible and suitable for children accompanied by adults. It draws on the practice of mindfulness and encourages participants to record, through a variety of media including drawing, photography and poetry etc., changes in the landscape and changes within themselves.

Note: a substantial part of the walk is undertaken in silence. For parents with young children who find silence difficult this 'rule' should be generously interpreted. The same applies for carers accompanying adults with special needs.

Email Jonathan to book at jb4change[at]gmail.com