New Photography Books: ‘A Voice Above The Linn’ By Robbie Lawrence (2020)

In ‘A Voice Above The Linn’ Lawrence collaborated with the renowned poet John Burnside, who contributed four beautiful new poems to segment its chapters. 

In 2016 Robbie Lawrence first travelled to a remote stretch of coastline in the west coast of Scotland, to Linn Gardens, which lies at the head of Cove Bay on the west side of Rosneath peninsula. The gardens had been run for fifty years by Jim Taggart, an avid botanist and gardener. 

Jim discovered that the region’s subtropical climate allowed him to grow plants and flowers from all over the world. His endeavours led to the estate being covered in an intricately plotted web of ferns, bamboos, Magnolias and Rhododendrons. As Jim got older, his son Jamie took over the more physical elements of maintaining the garden, including travelling abroad to research and gather new plants. On one such journey, to the northern mountainous region of Vietnam, Jamie disappeared. His body was found years later, he had evidently fallen in one of the mountain’s higher passes.  

When I first met Jim, who by this point was well into his 80s, he told me that he decided to keep the garden going as a memorial to his son. Over the past few years, I went back to visit Jim and document the garden as it passed through the seasons. Despite his age, Jim would bound around the garden, occasionally stopping to provide a lengthy anecdote about a particular fern or tree. Last summer, Jim passed away at the age of 84.” – Robbie Lawrence 

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