Gill Russell is an artist interested in place, liminality and a resonance beyond topographical boundaries to more universal issues. She works across a range of forms and media, including installation, audio, mapping, walking, drawing, poems and texts. Walking is often key to her exploration. As well as solo projects and exhibitions she has worked with other artists/ musicians/writers on many collaborative ventures.
Current work (Feb 2023- present) is the project Obfuscation, a collaboration between Gill, sound artist/composer Pete Stollery and musician/composer Fraser Fifield, funded by Creative Scotland Open Fund.
Recent ventures includes the exhibition Boundaries: A City of Sea and Sky with writer Esther Woolfson (Aberdeen Music Hall 2022/23), commissioned by Aberdeen Performing Arts. Participatory and solo projects include: Our Living Rivers and Glens (2021) working with sound artist Pete Stollery and local communities to create a Sound Map; the Covid Walking Project, ‘a hundred days of drawing with my boots on the hill’ (2020); a flood protection scheme in Hawick (2017 to current), and exhibitions at An Lanntair, Stornoway ( 2021) and Taigh Chearsabhag ( 2021).
She has worked with poet/artist Alec Finlay on several projects with special areas of interest including poetic interpretation of place names, river systems, ecological mappings, guiding walks. For example 'Gathering', a poetic and photographic mapping of the Braemar region inspired by local placenames and their meanings, commissioned by Hauser & Wirth.
In 2014, she had a walking residency with Deveron Arts, Huntly on the 'Hielan' Ways' project, identifying sites or landforms of significance and focusing on paths and the watercourses which define the land. From these explorations, she created a blog ' lorg-coise ' and a book of fourteen thematic map-drawings of walking routes with texts.
Installations (outdoor and indoor) include Landmarks (2013) in Glenbuchat, Strathdon; Where Long Shadows Fall (2011/2012), outdoor installations and events for UNESCO’s Year of the Forest in Cairngorms National Park including the outdoor sound and light installations Sòrn ( pictured below in Strathmashie forest); Artist in residence at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig in Skye (2009/10) and solo exhibition ‘Uamh/Cave’ (2011), an installation about the High Pasture Cave in Skye at the Royal Scottish Academy, Edinburgh.
Gill lives in Glenkindie, Strathdon.