Devil's Plantation - Elemental Films

The superficial inducement, the exotic, the picturesque has an effect only on the foreigner. To portray a city, a native must have other, deeper motives - motives of one who travels into the past instead of into the distance. A native's book about his city will always be related to memories; the writer has not spent his childhood there in vain.

Walter Benjamin


Seven guys I met on the path to Duncolm
The Angel Building, Paisley Road Toll
Bonnyton Mound aka The Devil's Plantation
Angel/cherub on tombstone, Govan Old Parish Church
The Arc aka The Squinty Bridge, Govan Road. Closed for 6 months due to bad construction

what is the devil’s plantation?

When I first picked up Harry Bell’s The Secret Geometry of Glasgow I was captured by it. So when I won the Scottish Arts Council’s Creative Scotland Award to make a website about my native city his book became my mother lode, together with the casenotes of Mary Ross, an ex-patient of Leverndale Psychiatric Hospital.

The Devil’s Plantation is many things. A long walk – a dérive. It’s 66 films about my native city. It’s a website and a compelling riddle. It’s a search for the soul of Glasgow and for the magic in ordinary places.

In 2010 the project won a Best Interactive BAFTA. Time moves on. Now I’ve completed a feature-length film version, narrated by the acclaimed actors Kate Dickie and Gary Lewis. A new App of The Devil’s Plantation is also now available.

and who am I?

I’m May Miles Thomas, a writer and director from Glasgow.

I’ve made factual TV, music videos, commercials and feature films. In 1995 I founded Elemental Films to produce my own work but I also do the occasional freelance job. Check out Wikipedia to find out more.

Though I’m proud that all my projects have won awards, more than anything I just love what I do and the people I do it with – well, most of the time.

Please follow me @deilsplantin or subscribe below – and all comments very welcome.

the devil’s plantation: Lighthouse screening

posted on
18 May 16
written by
May Miles Thomas
No Show

No Show

Yesterday I was informed by The Lighthouse that next week’s screening of The Devil’s Plantation and talk has been cancelled due to technical reasons. Apologies to anyone who was planning to come along – I was really looking forward to showing the film and talking to Paul Stallan about his work. I understand the venue […]

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