A lunch to celebrate ‘Succession’;
A James Stroud exhibition

James Stroud Succession with Balvenie Whisky

Last week I found myself in a carpark at The Vinyl Factory, to celebrate the launch of ‘Succession’ – photographer James Stroud’s new, beautiful exhibition.

James Stroud’s latest exhibition is a collection of photographs he took at The Balvenie distillery in Scotland – a place he was drawn to for the people, the process and the many generations whose lives have moved with it and have been connected with this wee part of Scotland for years… and he has captured their love, their heart and their true souls…

That's me getting very excited about the canapés with @poojipants...

That’s me getting very excited about the canapés with @poojipants… Photo: Clare Walsh Photography

‘Succession’ celebrates these people and their dedication. Their time spent, their patience, the clock moving slowly, marking each second. It respects the maturing of the highest quality whisky in their silent barrels… and the no rushing. The importance of slow…

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

We learnt about adding drops of water into our whisky, using these pipets..

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

The Balvenie built this beautiful bar especially – craftsmanship was everywhere in the room… from the bar to the table… and of course, the photography

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

The subject of his collection is the thought around Time and how everything gets better with age, something he felt was present and alive at the Distillery. The whisky process started by one person and finished a generation later by someone else, the idea that the skills of whisky making are passed on through generations and many from the same family and the idea that the tools used often out live the user. This is where the name comes from ‘Succession’.

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

James Stroud

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

Each image uses a special technique which involves the photo being divided into a grid, designed to give us a new perspective on the story behind it…

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

James Stroud  and The Balvenie share a deep love and respect for craft. They both have admiration for  talented craftsmen, who approach their work with passion and an equal balance of knowledge, art and science… so this partnership couldn’t have been more perfect.

And as the day unfolded, it became even clearer that this was a match made in whisky heaven…

I found myself seated at a long, perfectly sized, charmingly lit table in the centre of the carpark, where James’ photographs were displayed along the walls and round corners, crannies and nooks…

Everyone at the event had been chosen carefully by the brilliant Emma, who knows people   like I know pastries. (And I really know pastries). She just knows what works – who fits with who, what synergies may spark… and she nailed this one completely.

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

This kept happening…

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

I loved meeting Dinny Hall – Emma and Dinny could natter for hours!

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

We were taught how to drink our whisky by the Balvenie Master! Photo: Clare Walsh Photography

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

Warm crusty breads with marmite butter. STOP IT.

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

Our wonderful menu

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

The food was absolutely exquisite – hats off to www.the-recipe.co.uk

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

After a brief interlude, we returned to our table which was groaning under the weight of all the cheese, crackers, grapes and CHOCOLATE

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

Enormous slabs of chocolate…

James Stroud and The Balvenie - Succession

And a whisky pairing with every course. Natch.

“I love that each one is unique – you could never have another exactly the same. That has value in a time when everything is easy reproduced, and you never know whether to believe what you see” -James Stroud

Thank you James, Emma and the amazing team at The Balvenie for the most wonderful afternoon. I have been dreaming in drams ever since…

Poppy x

p.s. For more about James and his working process, have a little look at this film…

 

 

This post was shot on my LEICA D-LUX – dinky but dynamic ;)

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