A Step Towards the Earth: Interview with Tim Robinson.
Politics of Place
Exeter Centre for Literatures of Identity, Place and Sustainability (ECLIPSE), University of Exeter
The following is an interview with artist, cartographer and author Tim Robinson. In 1972 Tim left a life as a visual artist working in London and moved with his wife to the Aran Islands off the west coast of Ireland in Galway Bay. After the post-mistress on the island suggested he make a map for the tourists he began to compile an index of the placenames and the history and lore associated with them. There soon came to be far more information than he could represent on the map, and so he began work on his two-volume study of the islands, Stones of Aran, the first volume of which was to be published in 1986. Today Tim lives on the mainland with his wife Máiréad in the headquarters of their small publishing company Folding Landscapes in Roundstone, where 25 years on he has just finished the final book in his Connemara trilogy. In this interview Tim reflects on his early practice as an artist and how this might have affected his choice to move to Aran before discussing his method both as a maker of maps and as an author. Touching also on such subjects as science and its relationship to art, religion and the environment, he shows the depth of thought and the extraordinary commitment to his practice that we have come to expect from perhaps the greatest living literary and documentary author of place.
© Jos Smith (the author) 2013
Vol. 1, Issue 1, pp.4-11