© Brian Sweeney
25 years in the making this exhibition comprises photographs of rural football grounds in the Faroe Islands, Iceland and Scotland: From John O’Groats, to pitches in the Western Isles.
In 1995, with a growing reputation as a music and lifestyle photographer, Sweeney went to shoot a festival in Iceland. Near Reykjavik, he passed a football pitch with a wooden stand. Not a junior club, but the stadium of the top football team in Iceland. Back in Scotland he became a proud advocate of community clubs. Since then Iceland’s community teams have become a touchstone for youth development.
These images have taken on a powerful resonance since COVID-19 and the European Super League debacle. They demand that we cast our gaze back to a simpler time, reminding us of what football can do and what it means for smaller communities. And the importance, proud tradition and unending dedication that these grounds represent.
Kenneth Street, Stornoway HS1 2DS, UK