Born and educated in Scotland, Alexander Maitland is an author, artist and lecturer. His watercolours have been exhibited at the Royal Glasgow Institute and the Royal Academy, besides annual exhibitions in Scotland.
His first book, Speke and the Discovery of the Source of the Nile (1971), reprinted in 1973 and 2010, was followed by A Tower in a Wall: Conversations With Freya Stark (1982); Robert and Gabriela Cunninghame Graham (1983); The Highland Year (1988); Wild Thyme and Saladelle (1993); Wilfred Thesiger: A Life in Pictures (2004); Wilfred Thesiger: The Life of the Great Explorer (2006, 2007 and 2011); and Wilfred Thesiger in Africa (2010).
Alex was elected a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society in 1960, and is a member of the Library and Maps Committee. He curated the RGS exhibition ‘Oman’s Natural Heritage’, opened in March 2014 by HRH The Duke of Kent.
He is now working with the RGS on a major history of exploration, told through the stories of the Society’s Gold Medal-winners. Discovering the World will be published in 2019 by Weidenfeld & Nicolson.