A NEW exhibition marking the 130th anniversary of the birth of writer and environmentalist Nan Shepherd is being held in Edinburgh.

The paintings by Scottish artist Rose Strang are a response to Shepherd’s The Living Mountain, a much-loved classic of landscape literature. The paintings were commissioned by the Folio Society for their 2021 publication of The Living Mountain.

The new paintings have been praised by the executor of Shepherd’s literary estate, Erlend Clouston, who said they were “beautifully poised between the natural and unnatural worlds”.

“The Cairngorms have rarely looked so tender, and so profound. Nan would be enchanted,” he said.

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Award-winning author Robert Macfarlane, who wrote the introduction to the 2021 publication said: “Strang’s paintings are intensely dynamic, seethingly alive with stroke, dab, scratch and drip. Each of Strang’s seven paintings takes a phrase from The Living Mountain and dreams a response to it”.

The Living Mountain: Dreaming a Response is on display at the Scottish Poetry Library from now until March 31. The exhibition will then move to Edinburgh’s Heriot Gallery in collaboration with The Limetree Gallery, Bristol, from April 17 to April 23.

In addition, a public talk to coincide with the exhibition will take place on February 17 at the Scottish Poetry Library, when author Merryn Glover will discuss her new memoir The Hidden Fires – A Cairngorms Journey with Nan Shepherd (Birlinn). The book is published in March but will be exclusively available pre-publication at this event.

Joining her will be Clouston and Kerri Andrews, author of A History of Women Walking who is currently editing a volume of Shepherd’s letters for Edinburgh University Press.

The evening will be chaired by mountaineer and author Anna Fleming, author of Time on Rock – A Climber’s Route into the Mountains.

It is only in recent years that Shepherd’s writing has really taken off – so much so that The Living Mountain has been translated into 16 languages and inspired a tour by Icelandic singer Bjork.

It was written during the Second World War but didn’t see the light of day until 1977 when Shepherd was in her 80s.

Shepherd also published three novels and a collection of poetry, In the Cairngorms, where she expresses a deep kinship with nature.

As well as writing she taught English literature at the Aberdeen Training Centre for Teachers where she was said to be an inspiring teacher.