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Low was born in Gourock and in 1942 enrolled at Glasgow School of Art. She went on to study at Hospitalfield Summer School in Arbroath before attending Teacher Training College. However, teaching failed to inspire her and by chance she met the young comedian Stanley Baxter who introduced her to Glasgow’s Unity Theatre (an outreach project), with which she became heavily involved. At this time she was associated with the Clyde group of writers and artists, and depicted areas of Glasgow that were dilapidated and still scarred from the war. Low helped establish the critically acclaimed New Charing Cross Gallery in 1963 which promoted Scottish contemporary art at a time when there were few galleries in Glasgow.