Work by Shan Press :: Poem by Gerda Stevenson

Textile Art


Eliza Junor, born Demerara 1804, died Fortrose, 1861; daughter of Hugh Junor, slave owner from the Black Isle, and an unknown mother, probably a slave, or a `free coloured’ woman; won a prize for penmanship at Fortrose Academy

From Quines by Gerda Stevenson

Artist’s statement

Eliza Junor, taken from her homeland in Southern America, saved from slavery, brought to live in Scotland with her father, a Scottish slave owner.

In a country unused to seeing persons of colour I tried to convey her vague memories of place and childhood on the sugar plantations, with her pride in excelling in penmanship at Fortrose Academy. An acceptable steppingstone in a seemingly refined society where she maintains her dignity throughout open and veiled racist comments.

A topical subject for today’s world.