Edge of The Known World

New landscapes from China and St Kilda

Wednesday 1st – Friday 24th July, 2015

Corke Gallery, Liverpool, UK

New exhibition of contemporary paintings and sculpture invoke the enigmatic and beguiling wonder of the St Kilda archipelago.

The exhibition at Corke Gallery features 15 new works by Liverpool-based artist John Elcock and includes a rare showing of St. Kilda – The Lonely Islands (1967) directed by Christopher Mylne courtesy of the Scottish Screen Archive, the National Library of Scotland.

And in a new collaboration, the exhibition also features paintings by artist Josie Jenkins following her January 2015 residency in Xiamen, China with the Chinese European Art Center (CEAC). As Jenkins remarks:

“In China, I continually see and hear things that surprise me and some things that at first I found unbelievable. The landscape of China offers a complete contradiction to the landscape of Britain.”

In a similar vein, St Kilda’s remote location and sheer other-worldliness, offers a unique contradiction to the pastoral view of the British landscape. Elcock comments:

“In St Kilda, I have found an unending source of inspiration for the artist. From its ancient geology, rich natural ecology, to the personal stories of the former inhabitants, it is a truly unique and enigmatic place”.

The exhibition is free and open to the public 1-5pm Wednesday, Thursday and Friday and by appointment by calling 07773 287 827.

Landscapes from China and St Kilda runs from Wednesday 1st – Friday 24th July, 2015.
Enquiries to Nic Corke at Corke Gallery.

You may purchase the exhibition catalogue for ‘Edge of the Known World‘ here.

Winter Solstice, Stac An Armin, a painting by John Elcock

Winter Solstice, Stac An Armin (2014) John Elcock

'Container Islandʼ a painting by artist Josie Jenkins

‘Container Islandʼ, (2015) Josie Jenkins



A Liverpool Mailboat

In September 2015 a Liverpool Mailboat that I created for the exhibition Edge of the Known World at Corke Gallery (1-24 July 2015) was launched on the River Mersey.

If you are reading this page, you may well be the lucky finder of the mailboat. If so, congratulations!

Please follow the instructions you found inside the vessel.


If not, then this little boat is still somewhere out at sea and on a journey that may never reach a known conclusion.

Should it be recovered than its remarkable story, including details of its launch, will be told here.

September 2015

Nephesh of Kilda

The evening sky is stained with cobalt ink and shows Venus ascendant over Stac an Armin. Wheeling pinpricks of white birds are scarcely visible over Stac Lee, one of the tallest sea stacs in the British Isles, which here is transfigured courtesy of its remarkable similarity of topography into the garden tomb at Gethsemene.

The Virgin of Philae

Who could not be moved by the journey of a tiny craft across the sea of space to land on a pinprick of an island that is Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko?

Day, Stac Lee

The following poem accompanies a painting of the same name in the KIlda series. Of note, Stac Lee forms one of a trinity of rock forms north of the main island of Hirta.