YAARP takes to the field

DSC_0030To many people across the country, YAARP is associated with a certain police film set in a model village in the West Country (filmed in Wells actually), but to archaeologists and artists in Orkney, the initials can only mean one thing….Yesnaby Art and Archaeology Research Project.

The ten day YAARP fieldwork starts on 31st July and brings together staff and students from the University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology Institute, volunteers and artists with the aim of creating a unique view of the important archaeological landscape of Yesnaby, West Mainland, Orkney.

The team led by University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology Institute archaeologist Dr James Moore and visual artist Rik Hammond uses geophysics, drone photography and 3D modelling techniques, alongside a variety of arts based practices to record the ever changing landscape of Yesnaby.


This is the third year of YAARP and this year the team will be focusing on creating unique digital and traditional artwork in the field based on the natural and cultural landscape. One exciting idea involves the creation of 3D models of elements of the landscape and reproducing them in physical form using 3D printing.

Dr James Moore says, “ We have developed an almost bewildering number of ways of studying, experiencing and presenting this important landscape. I think the whole team are looking forward to what new ideas, data and possibilities come from this phase of work, as well as the somewhat controversial ‘biscuit league’ being expanded to include a whole range of cakes and other treats. The project builds on many years of research, both as individuals and as a team, and we are looking forward to presenting a taste of the results by staging an exhibition in Orkney during spring 2018.”



Follow YAARP social mediaFacebook @YesnabyArtArchaeologyResearchProject and Twitter @YAARP_Orkney and Rik Hammond @rikhammond.artist

Thanks to Orkney Islands Council Culture Fund for supporting the project.

Ness to Ness: Art & Archaeology Workshop 2017

NesstoNessfPosterJul17The University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology Institute have teamed up with Orkney College Art Department to offer a summer Art and Archaeology workshop.

  • Dates: 17th-20thAugust 2017
  • Venue: Orkney
  • All welcome. No experience necessary.
  • Cost: £220 per person for 4 days (accommodation and food not included)
  • Contact Mary Connolly at studyarchaeology@uhi.ac.uk or 01856 569225 to book a place

The schedule for the four days includes:

Thursday 17th August. Field Day. Ness of Brodgar and Ness Battery


After an introduction to the workshop, we will visit the excavations at the Ness of Brodgar. You will enjoy a bespoke tour of the site with Site Director Nick Card and see its unique art with Neolithic art specialist Dr Antonia Thomas. In the afternoon we will have a tour of the remarkable buildings at the Ness battery and its unique WW2 painted murals with archaeologists Andrew Hollinrake and Dan Lee.

Friday 18th August. Studio Day. Printmaking with Charles Shearer

A&A 1For today’s session, we will be based in the art studios at Orkney College UHI in Kirkwall with designer Kirsteen Stewart. Inspired by the previous field days, you will develop your creative ideas through the medium of print with world-renowned printmaker Charles Shearer. You will also have the opportunity to learn the process of collagraph print production from drawing and cutting using a range of tools, through to the application of textures and materials that help give this process its unique character. Professor Mark Edmonds will also give a guest lecture where he will discuss the intersection of art and archaeology and his own printmaking practice.

Saturday 19th August. Field Day. Pier Arts Centre and Warbeth Beach

For today’s field trip we will have a dedicated tour of the Pier Arts Centre and its world-class collection of British Modernist paintings and sculpture, led by Education Officer and artist Carol Dunbar. The afternoon will be spent on Warbeth Beach where we will explore the materials used for art making in the Neolithic, and find our how this striking landscape inspires modern and contemporary artists.

Sunday 20th August. Studio Day. Printmaking with Charles Shearer

During this workshop, you will be able to develop your ideas from the previous three days further and continue to work on collagraph printmaking with Charles Shearer and explore other forms of mark-making with designer Kirsteen Stewart.

Cost: £220 per person for 4 days (accommodation and food not included).Contact Mary Connolly at studyarchaeology@uhi.ac.uk or 01856 569225 to book a place.