Newton Harrison - On The Deep Wealth of this Nation, Scotland

The Deep Wealth Performance

Newton Harrison’s The Deep Wealth of this Nation, Scotland provides an ecological vision for how Scotland could become the first industrialised nation to give back more to the life web than it consumes. The vision draws out the importance of five commons: soil, forestry, water, air and importantly the commons of mind, meaning how we as a human population might reach agreement about principles for putting the health of ecosystems first. It therefore offers a holistic vision and framework to draw together different stakeholders including artists, scientists and citizens to explore the importance of soil the natural environment for mitigation and adaptation to collectively address the challenges we face.

The installation comprises a series of 10 panels, each developed through image and poetry. Six of the canvases have maps exploring each of the commons and four develop specific practical interventions including syntropic farming, foraging, forestry and natural flood management.

The installation is simultaneously an artwork, a research project, a provocation and a thought experiment for adaptation, one that can only work if we manage to come together around what is at stake. It asks us to think, to imagine and to debate, to share contradictions, disagreements and in this way to arrive at insight.

It is a work of hope.

Find out more about artists - the Harrisons

Explore the project

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The Deep Wealth Conversation: Newton Harrison, artist and Professor Colin Campbell, Chief Executive, James Hutton Institute

The Collaboration

The Deep Wealth of this Nation, Scotland is a collaboration between Newton Harrison at the Centre for the Study of the Force Majeure ( and two organisations in North East Scotland - the Barn and the James Hutton Institute, that delivers fundamental and applied science into sustainable use of land and natural resources ( The development of the work was also supported by Professor Emeritus Anne Douglas, Chris Fremantle, founder and director ecoartscotland, research fellow Gray’s School of Art, Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen


Exhibition at The World Congress of Soil Science, Glasgow (31st July – 5th August)

Previous Events


Exhibition at the Taipei Biennial, Post-Nature - A Museum as an Ecosystem

Exhibition at St Margarets, Braemar


Exhibition at Dynamic Earth coinciding with 41st Macauley Lecture, Professor Jacqueline McGlade

Exhibition at Chartered Institute of Water and Environmental Management Conference, Edinburgh

Exhibition, presentation and discussion at Andrew Grant Gallery, Edinburgh College of Art

Presentation and discussion with Newton Harrison, Botanic Cottage, Royal Botanic Gardens, Edinburgh

Exhibition, presentation and discussion opening event at the Barn, Banchory

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