The Doric Boule 

Look Again festival 


The Doric Boule connects ideas of local power and influence to a wider view of the world, creating a public meeting point in courtyard of the Marischal college - which is the headquarters of the Aberdeen city council - made from granites from around the world. This work refers to local culture and dialect, while remaining resolutely outward-facing in times of change. The Marischal college was chosen as the work relates to the idea of council and democracy. One of the stones used in the piece is actually the same granite that the building is made from called Kemnay Grey which was quarried just outside Aberdeen. The other six granites have been imported from around the world.

The works name comes from the ‘Boule’, which was an early form of council in Ancient Greece, a gathering of city elders that underpinned the birth of democracy, and the term Doric, which is a popular name for the north east Scots language, a term which is believed to come from the Doric speech of ancient Greece spoken in Doria, and associated with the country and peasantry.

The idea behind the Doric Boule was to create a social setting where people can come, discuss the topic of the day or simply just hang out. Granite was chosen as it is a symbol of the city, but instead of only working with local granite, more exotic, colourful granites were also imported from around the world. The thought behind this was that if granite is a symbol of the city then the foreign granites would represent the people who have moved into Aberdeen from outside to help create the multicultural city we see today.

The initial inspiration came from a visit to the Seven Incorporated Trades of Aberdeen, which was a trade guild founded in 1587. Since the idea around the Seven Trades was to band together so as to have a stronger voice within the local community, the outcome became communal seating that would act as a meeting place for the people working and living in the area.


Granite - Paradiso, Kuppam Green, Vizag Blue, Black, Suzuki Pink, Norden Grey and Kemnay Grey

Each bench is 25x50x100cm placed in a 9m ring