With programming for the planet at its core, the 2021 Edinburgh Science Festival which will run from 26 June – 11 July focuses on the climate challenges and opportunities ahead, as the world prepares for the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow in November.

Human Nature is the Festival’s first 2021 event, a photography exhibition on Portobello Promenade which has been unveiled on Saturday, 12 June.

Creative Director Amanda Tyndall at the outdoor exhibition on Portobello Prom PHOTO JL Preece

We spoke with Amanda Tyndall, Festival and Creative Director of Edinburgh Science Festival as we walked round the exhibition.

The global pandemic has highlighted our basic human need for access to nature. This exhibition takes audiences on a photographic journey around the world how we as humans connect to nature. It considers the importance of the natural world to our well-being and health and showcases how global community is tackling the challenges brought on by the climate crisis.

Human Nature features work of a range of critically acclaimed photographers, including Lucas Foglia whose photographs often feature in the National Geographic and New York Times and Anna Deacon, Edinburgh-based photographer and author known for her portraits of wild swimmers. From mud baths and beekeeping to portraits of Indigenous children in Australia or that of Holly Gillibrand, 16-year-old climate activist who introduced the Fridays for Future Scotland,

Human Nature showcases how our responsibility and custodianship for our wild places connects us, in a time when vital ecosystems around the world are in crisis.

Emily Raemakers from Edinburgh Science mimics the pose in local photographer, Anna Deacon’s photo which is on one of the billboards on the Prom. PHOTO JL Preece