Media release: Stunning tribute to a ‘magnificent old hypocrite’


EDINBURGH – Allan Wright and Gerda Stevenson

Book launch – 6.30pm – Mon 14 Oct – The Edinburgh Bookshop, 219 Bruntsfield Pl, Edinburgh EH10 4DH

“A stunning tribute to that magnificent old hypocrite, the city of Edinburgh. The combination of Allan Wright’s gorgeous photography and Gerda Stevenson’s introduction and searing poetry hints that the time may be near when Scotland’s capital of easy virtue will become an honest and independent woman again.” Richard Holloway

“Fabulous, intimate portrait of Edinburgh in this new book with poems by Gerda Stevenson of ‘Quines fame’, with matching images by photographer, Allan Wright. This is not the tourist’s view nor an uncritical, gushing tribute. Perceptive, spirited and loving.” Lesley Riddoch

Scottish landscape photographer, Allan Wright, and Scottish writer, Gerda Stevenson, engage head-on with Scotland’s capital, one of Europe’s great European cities.

87 new photographs and 22 new poems, present Edinburgh in all her guises – ancient and modern, local and international, privileged and disenfranchised, dazzlingly glamorous and down-at-heel.

Edinburgh is sure to resonate with residents from all over the city as well as with the millions of visitors who throng the streets, cafes and bars on a daily basis. The book tells a powerful story with breadth, depth, wit and humour, and with a surprisingly light touch.

Allan Wright says:

“I have derived a novel and rewarding sense of fellowship in creating this book. My initial concept was to produce a comparatively modest format, aimed at the photographically-conscious visitor.

“By good fortune, however, in engaging with Gerda Stevenson as co-author, the scope and spirit of the work has been widened and deepened.

“The poems featured in this book have interacted with my images penetrating the veneer that can often dominate the city. All those prestigious castings and fine masonry may, collectively, have created one of Europe’s most beautiful cities, but there were struggles in its making, and, so often, a human price was paid. I hope, therefore, it proves thought-provoking at the very least.”

Gerda Stevenson says:

“This has been a fascinating and welcome collaboration – an opportunity to reacquaint myself with my beloved home city, and its many contradictions.

“I’ve relished both the process of responding to Allan Wright’s vibrant images, and the way in which the project unexpectedly developed: finding myself writing additional poems about aspects of the city which Allan then went out to photograph. The journey towards finding a visual and poetic narrative became a dynamic creative exchange, involving vigorous debate.”

Edinburgh: Published: 14 October 2019 – ISBN 978 – 1 – 905683 – 92 -5

By Allan Wright and Gerda Stevenson

Publisher: Allan Wright Photographic / Lomond Books Ltd.

Paperback: £15.00

In all good bookshops.

Buy online:

For further info, photographs and interviews, please contact: Carol Carr PR on 01450 870 844 / 07766 754 87 E:

Additional information

Biography – Allan Wright

Allan Wright is an award-winning, professional landscape photographer with a prolific output of published material since the 1980s. His work has featured in a catalogue of 17 books to date, reflecting a lifetime spent journeying and adventuring all over his native Scotland, South East Asia, Vietnam and Morocco Libya, Australia and most recently Tasmania. On returning home to Scotland in 2019, he published Vintage Tractors and Scotland’s Islands, before capturing this contemporary insight into the city of Edinburgh.

Current publications include: Skye 2nd edition, Galloway, Now Glasgow, Arran 60 Best Views, Mull & Iona, Perthshire, Vintage Tractors and Scotland’s Islands.

Biography – Gerda Stevenson

Gerda Stevenson is an award-winning writer/actor/director/singer-songwriter. Her drama, prose and poetry are widely performed, broadcast and published, including Federer versus Murray (Salmagundi, USA), If This Were Real (Smokestack Books) published in an Italian translation Se Questo Fosse Vero (Edizioni Ensemble, Rome); Quines: Poems in tribute to women of Scotland, (Luath Press), and Inside & Out: the art of Christian Small (Scotland Street Press) for which she wrote a biographical introduction and poems.


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