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.

see media
  • title:
    Craigmillar Castle from Dalkeith Road
  • accession number:
    NG 193
  • artist:
  • gallery:
  • object type:
  • subject:
  • 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

Robert Gibb