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I travel to explore communities and what it means to belong. In 2009, while visiting family in Scalpay, a small fishing community in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland, I saw the declining traditions of my ancestors. My uncle, a lifelong fisherman, spoke of the disappearance of the herring, his “silver darlings,” and the imminent loss of his vocation. It was during that trip I felt a connection to my heritage and began a relationship with the coast. The following year I decided to travel on the first of many journeys to investigate Canada’s coastline (my new home), to experience its beauty and its harshness, to experience life where the land meets the sea.
I was born in the Highlands of Scotland and have been living and working in Canada since 2007. Graduating with a BA (Hons) from The Glasgow School of Art in 2002 and specializing in both photography and film. My projects have been published, exhibited and screened internationally and I was a recipient of the Canada Council for the Arts award for the on-going project Coastal, which I'm currently developing as a longterm body of work. Coastal was exhibited as a Primary Scotiabank Contact Photography solo show at the Harbourfront Centre in 2017, and as a public installation on the grounds of the Harbourfront in Toronto.
As a photographer I have been commissioned by publications and institutions around the world. Clients include National Geographic, The New York Times, VQR, the Canadian Red Cross, Outside Magazine, en Route, The Walrus, The Scots Magazine, The Christian Science Monitor, The Globe and Mail, Report on Business, Macleans, The Grid, Canadian Business, DIE ZEIT and The Guardian.
I'm interested in photography as a whole, having worked as a photo editor for Raw View magazine and previously curating 45 photographic exhibitions showcasing the work of Canadian and international photographers. At the moment I am focused on personal work, collaborations, assignments and commissions.
Take care, Johan.