Playful, Fantastical, Rare: At Home With Tilda Swinton On Her Highlands Estate

Loved by Hollywood and the artistic counterculture alike, Tilda Swinton takes delight in Chanel’s spring/summer ’21 collection, and discusses fashion, performance and the avant-garde with playwright Jeremy O Harris. Photographs by Nikolai von Bismarck. Styling by Jerry Stafford.

For years I’ve dreamt of my first meeting with Tilda – an actor who, I think we can all agree, has no need for a last name. In the fantasies of my youth, when I first discovered her work while devouring Derek Jarman’s, I imagined that our meeting would take place at a dinner party. It would be filled with an eclectic mix of individuals from the literary, art and fashion worlds, and I would be there as a lucky plus-one. Perhaps I would receive an invitation to visit her family home in Scotland, and would spend an autumnal weekend in her beloved garden – as Nikolai von Bismarck did for this story, shot in and around her beautiful house in the Highlands.

But, like so many fantasies, particularly this year, that one never materialised. Our first meeting, for this interview, had to happen over Zoom – she on a bed prepping a Joanna Hogg film in Wales and me in Notting Hill. Even so, what transpired was something akin to the sublime. It was a meeting more intimate than I could have ever imagined.

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