The cantilevered, 53,000 tonne Forth Bridge is an icon of Victorian engineering.
Work began in 1883 and it opened to the first steam train on 4th March 1890. It was the first major construction in Britain to be built of steel. Its contemporary, the Eiffel Tower, was built from wrought iron. Even today it’s regarded as an engineering marvel. Its distinctive red oxide paint was supplied by Craig & Rose for over a hundred years and for generations the Bridge was used extensively in the company’s advertising and on the front of thousands of tins of paint and varnish.
Artist-in-residence Catriona Taylor found extensive files in the Craig & Rose archive dedicated to the Forth Bridge. So, of course, it had to feature in one of her sketches. She’s drawn it before - “I made a couple of long thin monochrome paintings. It’s structurally very beautiful,” she said. “The chalked lines in the Craig & Rose sketch are an echo of former times. “
This watercolour depicts a number of items from the Craig & Rose factory, including a historic paint tin, a roll of colourchip labels, and a selection of historic files alongside her depiction of the Forth Bridge.
On a clear day you can still see the Forth Bridge from the factory.