Craigmillar Castle from Dalkeith Road (About 1826)
About this artwork
Gibb exhibited this picture at the Royal Institution in Edinburgh in 1826. It is an idyllic scene of rural life set against a backdrop of fields, where the old tower-house of Craigmillar Castle nestles in the distance. The whole scene is serene and picturesque, and the farm-workers guide the cattle across the shallow river at a leisurely pace. This peaceful scene is inconsistent with the agricultural revolution that was actually taking place in the Scottish Lowlands at the time. Wealthy landowners were enclosing their estates, and modern farming methods were being introduced to maximise profit, radically altering people’s rural existence and impoverishing many. Gibb’s nostalgia for a fading way of life in many way parallels the work of his English contemporary, John Constable.
- title: Craigmillar Castle from Dalkeith Road
- accession number: NG 193
- artist: Robert GibbScottish (1801 - 1837)
- gallery: Paxton House
- object type: Painting
- subject: Bridges Castles Topographical Animals Rivers
- materials: Oil on board
- date created: About 1826
- measurements: 27.30 x 40.00 cm (framed: 43.70 x 56.30 x 6.20 cm)
- credit line: Purchased by the Royal Institution 1826; transferred to the National Gallery of Scotland 1859
- photographer: Antonia Reeve
Robert Gibb was born in Dundee 1801. He was a Foundation Associate of the Royal Scottish Academy in 1826, but was one of the nine artists who withdrew after the first meeting. In 1829, however, he was re-elected as an Academician, and became a regular exhibitor at both the Academy and its rival establishment, the Royal Institution. Gibb was a landscape painter, mainly working in oils and in watercolour, and was among the first Scottish landscape painters to work out of doors. He never received recognition to equal that of his peers, possibly because of the brevity of his life.