Chapter One: Scotland
I’ve been waiting many months for this road trip with my family. My sister doesn’t live in France, thus it was a perfect occasion to meet abroad. We chose Britain. Why though ? Well, first, in the family, we have a serious penchant for this country. During this one week, we travel in Edinburgh, Gullane, London and Oxford where we went, my sister and I in a splendid castle.This journey has been so inspiring and fulfilling that I wanted to do something with those positives elements.Those feelings explain the creation of Little Britain, this mini-video project is a way to express the various experiences of this travel and to see my impregnation of space and surroundings. To be fair, I wasn’t focused on my looks during this journey. Each morning the silhouette was a matter of source. By watching the beautiful photographies taken by my sister, I realized how I’ve been stylistically inspired by the surroundings, the activities or the ambiances. Thus slowly those mini- videos were making more sense then ever. Above all, I feel that this journey was like a Wes Anderson’s movie. The color and the architecture makes me think about The Royal Tenenbaums. This project has been divided in 3 chapters, according the phases of this trip. Chapter One is on Scotland. I’ve never been there before this trip. I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised. This city is more than charming. The architecture is really heterogeneous. This city is full of history and some historians have even said that Edinburgh is the history pearl of the United-Kingdom. Even if this assessment is not certainly right, what is true is the fact that city has many historical secrets to deliver.
10:12am National Galleries Of Scotland
This museum makes me think about the National Gallery of Portrait in London. The architecture and the decor was quite similar. So, obviously, I fell in love with this museum. Velasquez, Monet, Renoir, Gauguin or Rembrandt, there are many treasure in it. My family and I were contemplating those master-pieces that tell us a lot about history and artistic aesthetic. We were so absorbed by what we have seen. What I especially like in this type experience is the comment and debate bring by art and its contemplation. This museum is not as big as the National Gallery in London, nevertheless, you can spend ages to analyze all paintings details. While we were carried on our tour, we have been stopped by the stunning status decorating the wall of the stairs. At this moment, I felt like I was in a mini-silo. A beautiful glass roof was bringing a wonderful light to the space. I was deeply impressed and intimated at the same time. But it was just the beginning of my astonishment. Indeed, upstair was exposed the most incredible portrait. Since there, I was convince that the best portait I had ever seen was at the National Gallery of Portrait. To me it was ‘Madame de Pompadou at her Tambour Frame’ painted by François-Hubert Drouais. Gosh… I was totally wrong. Maybe I will not feel the same in a few years when I have had the opportunity to see portraits of Marie-Antoinette. However, the painting I saw at this museum, will be forever and ever in my mind. At this moment, my sister and I was chatting as usual about all and everything. Then, we arrived to into this room and saw the portrait of Lady Agnew of Lochnaw by John Singer Sargent. We both stopped talking and listening. We were just amazed by the realism of the face. Indeed, when you look closely, this painting is not perfect, the dress or even the details in the back are not stunning, even though the technic is really good. But the face of this lady feel so alive. I’ll always remember the face and the ambiance when we saw it, we were speachless, even if there was just next to it Degas’ and Gaugin’s paintings.
3:35 pm : Royal Botanic Garden
This garden is a treasure of exotic and rare plants and flower. The walk is more than pleasant. It is hard to not stop at each inch. My parents are really green people, and this garden, which has a royal status, was the perfect place to them. This scientific institution works on studying and preserving various plants. From Rhododendron to Eucryphia passing by Davallia mariesii, there are many exotics varieties. We’ve been called out by the slab fixed to every bench in the garden. Those slab had a « in a memory of.. » message. Each was customized, according the will of the family and relatives. Some of these messages were deeply touching. The deceased people used to have their habits on this garden. I only understood later on that this is kind of a tradition in Scotland. After laying together on one of those bench, we’ve pursued our walk through this atypical garden. We’ve bumped into this wonderful greenhouse so impressive and unreal. It was my second surprise of this day. This Royal Garden is a bubble in the city. You need just this garden to travel into the world though plants and flowers. It is a rare power for a simple garden, but as I have said before, this one is Royal.
4:22pm Gullane Beach
What a day! We have to take a bus to go to this little city, one hour from Edinburgh. Gullane is a lovely little town with a huge advantage : the beach. This little getaway makes me realize how I love seaside, and how the houses are majestic there. During the way on Gullane, the countryside were really green and typical. When we arrived we ate at a Golf club where people were deeply friendly and kind. Their kindness is what I really appreciated in this experience in Scotland. People were really helpful and sweet. After this nice lunch, we’ve started exploring the town and went to the beach because my dad is a real nature and seaside lover – after all he comes from Dakar, it makes sense. Gullane’s coasts are bordered by the North Sea, the temperatures might be really cold, but at this moment I didn’t mind at all. Sea breeze has a specific effect on me – maybe on every people. When I’m at the sea or at the ocean, my heart always feels lighter. Things have less matter in front of the sea vastness. I assume, as many people, I am always wondering which continent is facing us. Lie while we were kids, we started a shell hunt to bring memories with us. I kept this habit because when we were in Guadeloupe or Senegal, my mom always told me to look for shells because when they are big you can hear the sound on the waves and the sea in it. Then, when you come back home, you have a way to go back to your memories thanks to those shells. This story makes me immediately think about the power of objects in our daily life. You might think both are not necessarily linked, nevertheless, this example allows to see the retrospective power that stuffs might have in your life.