Julie-Ann graduated from Grays School of Art in 2014
‘My practice is influenced by urban exploration and places with themes of memory and nostalgia. I explore derelict locations as I find they are very intriguing places, which usually have a rich history to them. The photography and documentation I collect from these locations are key elements in creating a narrative to my work. I like to fill the spaces with items that relate to the place or objects that are more ambiguous, creating a comical or surreal tone to the work. I use various materials and techniques in my work ranging from watercolour pigments to laser engraving, creating depth and layers that mirror the aesthetic of the interiors.’ Samantha Cheevers
Samantha is the winner of the Art in Healthcare prize at the Royal Scottish Academy – New Contemporaries – exhibition March 2019.
Amy Dennis studied at Leeds College of Art 1995-96 and Edinburgh College of Art 1996-2000 (Drawing and Painting). Amy’s painting focuses on Edinburgh and the surrounding countryside. Her carefully arranged compositions capture landscape with geometric precision to terrific effect.
Julian graduated from Nottingham Trent University in 2012 with a Honours degree in Fine Art Photography and has successfully exhibited since. He has also been published in many artistic magazines including Aesthetica.
His work can be found in private and public collections around the world including that of Sir Elton John.
My process is induced by Being-in-the-World (Heidegger) and the constant existential questions that arise from it.
Following his appearances as a finalist on Sky Arts Portrait Artist of the Year, 2013, where he painted Michael Kerr, Sophie Dahl and AP McCoy, his rapidly executed, realist portraiture has been in steady demand both in the UK and abroad.
He was selected as a finalist in the BP Portrait award 2013, and in 2015 was shortlisted for the prestigious Conversations Prize for a multi-figure painting at the Royal Society of Portrait Painters.
Practising observational still-life and landscape painting as well as portraiture, his work hangs in private and public collections including The Robert Fleming collection, Princeton Theological Seminary and The Royal Scottish Academy.
The art of Fife based, Scottish artist Reinhard Behrens inhabits a mythical world of snow and ice, of eastern mystery, and of found objects and ideas which transcend time and place.
This world is called Naboland.
Matthew Draper identifies himself principally as a draughtsman; drawing being the most unencumbered and immediate form of image-making. He has began to experiment with printmaking whilst on a residency in 2017 which has bought a new element to practice. His work is made with an intense and energetic immediacy, working instinctively rather than methodically, keeping him physically and emotionally involved in the process.
He is interested in and influenced by the dramatic imagery of eighteenth and nineteenth century painting. He admires the idea of the contemplation of landscape in the Romantic spirit, found in the work of the German Romantics like Caspar David Friedrich and the notion of the grandeur of the landscape as expressed in the work of the American subliminal painters like Sanford Robinson Gifford and Frederic Edwin Church. These artists adopted the term ‘Luminism’, defined as light in the landscape and the effect that light has on the landscape and objects within it.
As a contemporary artist choosing to adopt this approach to light in the landscape, his interest is not to make straight forward topographical images that are illustrations of place. Instead he is attempting to make imagery that is descriptive of the circumstances under which the subject is viewed; images which convey a sense of place.
Jack Knox was one of the most influential artists to work in Scotland in the second half of the twentieth century. Born John Knox to a family of tailors in Kirkintilloch, Knox studied at the Glasgow School of Art (1953-57) where his drawings were noted for their mature draughtsmanship. After graduating, Knox went to Paris to attend the atelier of Cubist artist, André L’Hȏte. During his time in Europe Knox digested the various art movements of the moment, including Surrealism, Tachisme, Colour Field and Pop Art. Visiting the great museums, he was particularly interested in Analytic Cubism and Georges Braque’s intimation, rather than description, of object. He also went to Brussels to visit the first major show of American Abstract Expressionism in Europe. He returned to Scotland eager to establish his own style, drawing on everything he had seen in Europe.
In 1960 the Glasgow Herald presented an exhibition during the Edinburgh Festival of young artists from the west of Scotland. Knox was selected to show alongside George Devlin, Carole Gibbons, Anda Patterson, Douglas Abercrombie and Duncan Shanks. Knox’s paintings included in the exhibition, undertaken whilst he was living and working in Rothesay, show the influence of the Abstract Expressionists and Colour Field painting during these early years of his development. Responding more enthusiastically to the optimism of American Abstract Expressionism than to the more muted French variation, Tachisme, Knox expressed his opinion that ‘this was art starting all over again’. Knox’s outlook would remain emphatically international throughout his career, drawing on divergent, multifarious influences. He would go on to participate in exhibitions in Chicago, Warsaw, Brussels, New York, Düsseldorf, Vienna, San Paolo and Sarajevo.
In 1965 Knox moved from Rothesay to Carnoustie and became a lecturer in the Department of Drawing and Painting at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art in Dundee, where he worked alongside Alberto Morrocco and David McClure. In the immediate years after leaving art school, Knox’s palette was restrained and careful but during this period he incorporated PVA into his paintings, employing the speed and confidence needed to work with the material. Knox’s imagery during the 1960s was strong and individual but focused on subjects found in his immediate domestic surroundings. Recurring shapes and motifs emerge and everyday objects obtain philosophical importance. In 1966 Knox has his first major solo exhibition at Aitken Dott’s Scottish Gallery, Edinburgh. Reviewing the exhibition in the Glasgow Herald, Cordelia Oliver wrote that ‘at times there is a sense that everything is rushing off at tangents so that only the firm canvas edge holds the warring or escaping elements in place’.
Knox’s style developed rapidly over the course of his career. One critic remarked that he initially intensely disliked Knox’s work but, just as he began to like it, he found that the artist had changed to another style. Every time he warmed to Knox, the critic complained, he had changed his style. Despite the frequent stylistic shifts, Knox’s output across the decades is united by an urge to make connections between elements which are seemingly unrelated and to let ‘things coexist on the canvas’. Standing outside of art movements, Knox took his own path along his stylistic journey.
One of the most important developments in Knox’s style came about in 1972 when he took a group of students to Amsterdam and saw an exhibition of Colour Field painting at the Stedelijk Museum, including paintings by Morris Louis and Kenneth Noland. Although it had been formative in his early career, Colour Field now seemed old fashioned to Knox and he left the exhibition dissatisfied. During the same visit, he was revived at the Rijksmuseum by the seventeenth-century Dutch still lifes before going down to the museum café and, ironically, finding inspiration in the cheeses, hamburgers and beer for sale. Returning home, Knox began to paint scenes of food and drink with a sturdy two-dimensionality, adapting the Dutch realist tradition to anti-Modernist ends. Attracted to the opposition of textures in these scenes, Knox painted baskets of fruit with the woven material of the basket contrasting the smoothness of the fruit. This interest in domestic still lifes would continue for the rest of Knox’s life. He obsessively re-used objects to present a cornucopia resplendent with vitality and vibrancy.
In 1981 Knox moved back to the west coast and was appointed Head of Drawing and Painting at Glasgow School of Art. He worked in the spacious studio assigned to his post in the historic Mackintosh Building. Knox placed particular importance on careful drawing and instilled this in his students. He is remembered fondly by a generation of artists he tutored, a group of whom would later be dubbed the New Glasgow Boys. Knox taught at GSA until he retired in 1992. In 2004 he set up home and studio in Broughty Ferry, near Dundee, with his wife, Margaret, where he continued to work until his death in 2015.
Neil MacPherson lives and works in Caithness, in the remote Scottish Highlands. His paintings are inspired by the changing seasons, history and folklore of this dramatic landscape.
His work has been widely exhibited all over the world, in public and private collections. In Scotland, his paintings have been shown in the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, the Scottish Parliament Collection and the Gallery of Modern Art, in Glasgow.
A graduate of the Glasgow School of Art, he has won numerous awards through the years and was elected as a Member of the Royal Scottish Academy in 2006.
Herald’s career as an artist started in Arbroath but he soon realised the limitations that a small town presented in terms of training. Rather than going to Edinburgh, he enrolled at the Art School at Bushey, Hertfordshire but stayed only one term. However, the move brought him closer to London and its galleries and into the milieu of his fellow Scot, James Pryde and William Nicholson who were enjoying critical and commercial success as the Beggarstaff Brothers. He shared lodgings with both of them but was quick to develop this own highly individual style and technique both in watercolour and pastel. His watercolours have often been compared to Arthur Melville but Herald’s technique is wetter and his colour, particularly in these London views, is more diaphanous. After spending some years living in Croyden, Herald returned to Angus shortly after the turn of the century and settled in the harbour town of Arbroath. He was a prolific painter of the harbours of that coast and, although he continued to produce good work, he did not prosper. In a letter dated 30 January 1915, a year after his brother’s death, William Herald wrote to John Ewen that “the final days were pathetic in the extreme. He confessed to me a few days before the close that he had made a “mess” of it. Fortunately he was spared the agony of a long illness and died simply as he had lived”.
My recent art practice has developed within the area of Drawing, Painting and Printmaking. European Modernism and American Abstraction form major influences. Still Life, Landscape and Figure Composition form the main categories of my work.
My work has been exhibited widely, in Britain and abroad, and is represented in various collections, public and private
The locations forming the basis for my work are mainly those that featured in my childhood, places I’ve visited or those that are re-imagined. Capturing a sense of place is an important aspect to each piece; alluding to an atmosphere in which I explore the presence of absence. The objects that populate each space suggest human interaction and are based on my wider interests, sport being a prime example.
Within the paintings I like to include subtle narratives creating an element of curiosity but not to an overpowering level, just enough to question the viewer’s judgment of what the work could be about. The title and compositional elements within the paintings will inevitably offer clues regarding each paintings subject.
Paul Murray graduated from Glasgow School of Art in 1984. Drawing inspiration from the landscapes around his Gourock home, Murray’s paintings demonstrate an acute understanding of compositional balance, weighing physical space against negative space. Whilst a good deal of his work still focuses on the drawn mark combined with collage, Murray has also increased his use of paint and scale of canvas, continuing to be inspired by the shapes and textures within landscape and still life compositions, though only as a starting point, allowing the drawn mark or brush stroke to dictate what happens next. Murray explains how he tries to make different marks in each piece of work, not repeating things he ‘already knows the answer to’. While it is inevitable that a recognisable style will permeate, Murray believes that his work is continually changing, developing and improving with each passing exhibition. ‘From Places I’ve Been’, examines his foray into these explorative techniques. An energetic mixture of still life and landscape, the show features a variety of wintry scenes with Murray’s bright summery works studded jewel-like throughout. Darker, more subdued colours mingle with his recognisable use of vivid pinks, yellows and oranges, creating warmth and depth, while shades of blue, black and deep red lend an elegance and grandeur to each composition.
Born in Dundee, the son of Andrew Patrick, an architect and amateur artist who encouraged his son to draw and paint, he studied painting at Glasgow School of Art from 1924 to 1928, studying with Maurice Greiffenhagen, and in Paris. He continued his interest in etching which was very popular in the 1920s and was to prove a source of income for him during the Depression years. A foremost landscape painter, he began his career producing highly finished etchings, but when the market for these collapsed in the 1930s he turned towards painting in watercolour and oil.
He produced portraits and still life works but is known mainly for his paintings of cultivated landscapes in the Scottish countryside. They are often very wide in scope yet meticulously detailed. In this he has been compared to Bruegel. His style was traditional but his use of colour could be bold, as were some compositional aspects of several of his paintings.
He received many awards including the Guthrie Prize and was elected a full member of the Royal Scottish Academy in 1957.
Sir William Gillies trained and taught at Edinburgh College of Art, and did the latter as principal. He was a great influence on many of the next generation of the Edinburgh School. He himself studied in Paris with Andre Lhote and absorbed, variously, the work of Munch, Matisse, Braque and Bonnard. Still life and landscape oils tend to be composed studio pieces of subtle complexity. Watercolours are lyrically observed renderings of the Scottish Borders based on decisive pencil or pen drawings or for larger works, executed alla prima.
Although he experimented with portraiture in his early career, Gillies concentrated principally on landscapes and still lifes. Gillies influence on Scottish painting of the twentieth century has been profound.
Born in Glasgow in 1961, Calum Colvin has exhibited his work nationally and internationally for over thirty years since graduating from the Royal College of Art in 1985. He was a winner of one of the first Scottish Arts Council Creative Scotland Awards from which he created the acclaimed exhibition for the SNPG ‘Ossian, Fragments of Ancient Poetry’ in 2001. He was awarded an OBE the same year and is Professor of Fine Art Photography at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, University of Dundee. Colvin’s constructed photographic artworks begin as large-scale studio ‘stage-sets’, tableaux of everyday objects, furniture and bric-a-brac carefully posed and theatrically lit. Viewed from the fixed-point perspective of a large-format camera, painted trompe-l’oeil elements are introduced, integrating object and subject in a complex mise en scene. These are finally photographed on film, digitized and printed onto paper or canvas. His works have been widely exhibited in venues as diverse as Orkney, Los Angeles and Ecuador, and are represented in numerous collections including the Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art, New York; The Museum of Fine Art, Houston; The Tate Gallery, London and the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh.
David Mach is one of the UK’s most successful and respected artists, known for his dynamic and imaginative large scale collage, sculpture and installations using a wide range of materials, including coat hangers, matches, magazines and many others.
Born in 1956 in Fife, David Mach attended Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art where he chose to specialise in sculpture because he thought it was the most demanding, intellectually and physically. Following a postgraduate year, Mach won a scholarship to attend Art College in Warsaw. As Martial Law had been declared in Poland, he was unable to take up his place but instead was invited to do his MA at the Royal College of Art.
Conroy graduated from Glasgow School of Art in 1987 when his Degree Show caused a sensation. His ‘arrival’ represented a high-water mark in a period of enormous excitement surrounding the history of The School of Art and of Scottish painting. The painters of New Image Glasgow (Third Eye Centre, 1985) Howson, Campbell, Wiszniewski and Currie in particular were blazing a trail across the contemporary art scene, spiced with a measure of excess and machismo. In 1987, Conroy and his then-girlfriend Alison Watt emerged, sharing a more tonal, enigmatic vision. Conroy’s paintings evoking an Edwardian world of secret societies and arrested violence immediately made his reputation and his drawings in oil and pastel demonstrated a maturity and sophistication beyond his years.
Steven Campbell was a Scottish artist who created complex and humorous paintings with roots in performance and installation art. Campbell graduated from the Glasgow School of Art in 1982 and was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to study at the Pratt Institute in New York the same year. The artist rapidly gained recognition in America, and after a successful period abroad returned to Glasgow in 1987. He remained in Scotland for the rest of his career, developing his position as a link between Scottish artists of the previous generation, and the emerging artists of the 1990s.
Before studying at Glasgow School of Art Campbell was an engineer at the steelworks on the outskirts of Glasgow. After seven years at the steelworks he decided to pursue art. At Glasgow School of Art he was a contemporary of Ken Currie, Peter Howson and Adrian Wiszniewski. Although not a close-knit group, they were dubbed the ‘New Glasgow Boys’, a term Campbell disliked. They each became well known and contributed significantly to Scottish contemporary art, with a shared commitment to figurative painting.
During the 1980s Campbell’s work weaved a narrative of recurring figures in a somewhat surreal and disordered world. The stocky, tweed-clad male characters are philosophers, artists, and architects who navigate this puzzling, paradoxical world in search of meaning. These paintings do not offer any fixed interpretation, instead there are suggestions of historical and contemporary references and connections.
Ron O’Donnell is one of Scotland’s finest contemporary art-photographers.
A highly individual talent, he has exhibited nationally and internationally and is collected by eminent institutions and discerning individuals throughout the world. Renowned for his dazzling constructed and narrative photographs, he has created a body of work alive to the thrill of our hypermodern times.
Kate Whiteford was born in 1952 and studied at the Glasgow School of Art. Her work is in the permanent collection of the Tate Gallery.
In 1990, she represented Great Britain at the Venice Biennale as part of Three Scottish Sculptors along with David Mach and Arthur Watson.
Ken Currie was born in 1960, and Graduated from The Glasgow School of Art in 1983. It was therefore natural that Industrial Glasgow was the subject for his early work, with paintings that were linear in style and modelled in block-like forms. He was labelled as one of the New Glasgow Boys along with Peter Howson, Adrian Wisniewski and the late Steven Campbell who studied together at the Glasgow School of Art.
Deeply affected by political and humanitarian events in Eastern Europe, Currie began to depict decaying and damaged bodies as a response to what he felt was the sickness of contemporary society. In 1987, on the 200th anniversary of the Calton weavers Massacre, Currie was commissioned to paint a memorial which is displayed on the ceiling of the People’s Palace.
Currie was commissioned by the University of Edinburgh to paint a portrait of Peter Higgs, the theoretical physicist, which was unveiled in 2009. He is a “reluctant portraitist”, and this was only his second portrait. He said, referring to the Higgs boson, “I am very interested in Peter’s work. I don’t for one second claim to grasp the theory, but I do understand the sublime, and there is a sublime quality to it all, a beauty, an awesome quality. In some respects, the subject is quite terrifying. ”
Currie’s paintings remain primarily concerned with the human condition even though many of the images dealing with, for example, metaphysical questions do not feature figures a human presence is nevertheless always suggested.
Born Glasgow 1947. Trained at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art, Dundee 1977-81 and RA Schools 1981-84. Won a number of important awards including the Chalmers Jervis Prize and British Institute Prize 1980, Farquhar Reid travelling scholarship 1981 and the J van Beuren Wittman prize 1984. Expressionist painter, often autobiographical with use of symbols, rich colours and thick, textured brush strokes. Included in the influential “Vigorous Imagination” exhibition at SNGMA in 1987 along with rising stars Peter Howson, Ken Currie, Stephen Conroy amongst others. Included in the City collections of Glasgow, Edinburgh and Dundee.
Adrian Wiszniewski RSA, HonFRIAS, HRSW (b.1958) creates work characterised by a strong drawing element and fertile imagination. Populated with contemplative figures set in vividly coloured Arcadian landscapes, his paintings are rich with symbolic, political and philosophical depths.
Adrian Wiszniewski was born in Glasgow in 1958 and trained at Glasgow School of Art from 1979 to 1983. He was a leading figure in the revival of figurative painting in a group known as the New Glasgow Boys. His work can be found in many international collections such as the Gallery of Modern Art in New York, Metropolitan Museum, New York, Setagaya Museum, Tokyo, Japan, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh, Tate Britain, London and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Wiszniewski has had solo exhibitions in London, Sydney, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Ghent and Tokyo.
Gwen Hardie’s work engages with figuration and the act of perception. She first gained attention with her large scale tightly-cropped portraits of women. Her magnificatiions of skin lit by natural light resemble light effects in the landscape and micro/macro views of cells/earth. Observing from life, she employs aspects of classical painting and color theory to render a lifelike presence. Intimate and monumental, the body-image shifts back and forth perceptually between an atmospheric illusion and a thing of gravity, real and tangible.
Born and educated in Scotland , she has lived and worked in London and Berlin before settling in New York City in 2000. Hardie’s work was recently represented in The British exhibition; “Reality: Modern and Contemporary British Painting” at The Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool, July- Nov 2015 (previously at The Sainsbury Centre in Norwich) with Lucien Freud, Jenny Saville and others. Other recent shows include; “Skin Deep” a solo show at The Smoyer Gallery, Roanoke College, US in April/May 2014, “Borderline; Depictions of Skin” at Garis & Hahn, New York City and “Skin; An Artistic Atlas”, with John Coplans, Marlene Dumas and others at The Royal Hibernian Academy in Dublin, Ireland. Her solo show “Boundaries”, was in the Hebrides, Scotland, at An Lanntair and Taigh Chearsabhagh in 2012 / 2013 .
Hardie has been awarded residencies at The Bogliasco Foundation in Italy, (2015 and 2006), Yaddo, MacDowell and the VCCA in America. Her work has been reviewed in UK and US publications such as The Times, Art In America, The New York Times, The Glasgow Herald, The New Yorker, The Sunday Herald, Contemporary Visual Art, Time Out, The Scotsman and The Independent.
Hardie was the youngest living artist ever to be given a solo show at The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh, Scotland. She lived in London in the 90s and had solo shows with galleries such as Annely Juda Fine Art and Fischer Fine Art.
Sam Ainsley is an artist and teacher and until recently was Head of the MFA Programme at Glasgow School of Art. She has forged a remarkable career within the visual arts sector nationally and internationally. From 1985-1991 she taught on the Environmental Art programme under David Harding’s leadership when she co-founded the Master of Fine Art course and was the programme Director from its inception until 2006. She currently teaches part-time in Painting and Printmaking at GSA.
She is a respected and published spokeswoman for the visual arts and her own artwork is in a number of public and private collections nationally and internationally. Ainsley has contributed to a broad range of visual art initiatives in Scotland and has served as a Board member on The Scottish Sculpture Trust, The Arts Trust of Scotland, and many others. She was appointed to the Council of the Scottish Arts Council in 1998 and Chaired the Visual Art Committee at the SAC for two terms of office. Her extensive International travel and invited role as a visiting artist and curator have enhanced her informal position as an “International Ambassador” for Scottish Art and Artists.
She has exhibited in and curated independent exhibitions and undertaken residencies in numerous institutions and arts organisations across the USA, Australasia, Europe and the UK. She remains an external advisor to many MFA courses including Liverpool John Moores & Newcastle University and is the Visitor to the Royal Academy Schools. Recent presentations of her work include ‘New Scots’, RSA Edinburgh, 2008 and a recent two person show “Atlas of Encounters” at I Space Gallery, Chicago in February 2009.
June Redfern is a renowned Scottish artist, specialising in oils and watercolours. Raised in Fife, Scotland, she studied painting at Edinburgh College of Art and has gone on to become one of Scotland’s foremost expressionist landscape painters.
Squire`s deceptively simple paintings have eclectic roots, drawing variously on the elemental space & light of Western Scotland, the inner landscape of the subconscious, and iconic images of birds and beasts. Beautifully composed and making confident use of the visual silence of empty space, there is a recurring contemplative quality and stillness in the work which reaches past the here and now to something beyond.
David is best known as a film-maker for his intimate observational documentaries, (Gutted, This Mine is Ours, Me and My Face, Life’s Too Short, Please Leave The Light On, etc.) The shooting of these films as a director-cameraman developed from his early years as a film-cameraman in the 1970s when he shot major documentaries.
This wide-ranging experience as a cameraman would find him fuelled by adrenalin on the streets of Northern Ireland during the Troubles, or chasing World Rally cars from helicopters. Action and physical shoots became a speciality, including The Legend of Los Tayos in the Amazonian jungle, the last documentary made by Bill Forsyth before he embarked on his feature film career.
On a more cerebral note, he shot a number of arts films for cinema and television with the talented Scottish film-maker, Murray Grigor, (The Hand of Adam, Frank Lloyd Wright, Blast!). Murray also had the vision to bring to the screen the first two films featuring Billy Connolly (Clydescope, Big Banana Feet) which David shot as well.
The transition to directing and film-making came through the support and enthusiasm of producer Steve Clark-Hall. This included the great learning curve of delivering a weekly programme, Years Ahead, right from the opening days of Channel Four in 1982.
Not only has David left a wonderful archive of documentaries but his photography too is making its mark posthumously. An Eye on the Street, a portfolio of photographs shot in Glasgow in 1968, is now recognised for its archival importance and 40 of the images are held in the Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh. An Eye on the World is David’s collection of stills taken over 40 years and shows his remarkable sense of humour as well has his compassionate nature. Retrospectives have been held in both Glasgow and Edinburgh and there are now books of both portfolios.
In his final years David sought to pass on his knowledge and skills to his younger colleagues through training courses within the BBC. He died in April 2012 and is missed hugely by everyone who knew him.
Glasgow-born artist who attended Glasgow School of Art and furthered his studies at Hospitalfield, Arbroath. Dorrian began exhibiting in 1977 and has shown at the RSA and RSW. Paddy returned to his alma mater where he has been a respected life drawing tutor for over 30 years.
Heather Nevay was born in Glasgow, Scotland in 1965. She studied at Glasgow School of Art and graduated with BA Hons., Art and Design (Printed Textiles) in 1988. Heather uses symbolism to express ideas of heroism, weakness, fear and the shifting balance of human relationships. Her paintings are mostly figurative with colour being an important element of her work.
“Heather Nevay’s paintings shock at fist sight. She employs a repertoire of images that appear to have found their way to us from Hieronymus Bosch via classic cinematic horror: dogs with human heads, sinister little girls playing with lifelike dolls, a dark woodland teeming with tiny animals in strange clothing. They frequently depict children, surprised in the middle of some incomprehensible ritual, staring out at us with hostility and contempt”
Alexandra (Sandie) Gardner was born in 1945 and brought up in Glasgow.
She studied at Glasgow School of Art from 1963 to 1967 closely under the tutelage of the Head of School David Donaldson, who, as soon as she qualified, offered her an immediate teaching and lecturing post within the school. Alexandra, or Sandie as she prefers, remained as a lecturer at GSA for 21 years.
Throughout her teaching career, Sandie painted for exhibitions principally in a number of prestigious galleries in London, Edinburgh and Glasgow, and had any number of solo shows that were widely acclaimed. She is now recognised as one of Scotland’s most accomplished female painters and is highly sought after by galleries and collectors alike.
Her work is included within many important corporate, public and private collections – Glasgow Art Gallery and Museum; The Fine Art Society; Gothenburg Education Authority; The Fleming-Wyfold Art Foundation, London; Royal College of Physicians, Edinburgh; Royal Bank of Scotland collection, to name but a few.
Alexandra Gardner has work in private collections across the globe including USA, Canada, Holland, Singapore, Japan, Australia, Italy and Sweden.
Michael Clark was born in Ayr, Scotland 1959. He studied at the Edinburgh College of Art from 1979 – 1983. A love of film led him to work for the BBC in Glasgow for six years. On moving to London in 1989 he worked as a freelance Art Director and illustrator; he also began to paint again with much success.
He has had many solo and mixed shows with Galleries in London, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Suffolk, Norfolk and Oxford.
When John Boyd died in 2001, his friend and former pupil, Michael Scott prepared this obituary:
With the death of John Boyd, the Scottish art world has lost one of its most significant post-war painters. In an exhibition catalogue of 1996, I described him as ‘the quiet master of contemporary Scottish painting”, a judgment reinforced by time.
To know him and his work is to understand the appellation, for here was a professional life conducted with a complete absence of bombast, alongside the most serious mastery of the craft of painting, in the major fields of figure composition, still life, portraiture, the nude, and landscape. Here was a four-decade-long cultivation of an ever-deepening artistic vision. His reputation is now that of a painter’s painter, and his peers have no doubt that his creative powers were at their full height before his untimely death from prostate cancer.
He was born in 1940 in Stonehaven, Kincardineshire, where he was tutored in art at Machie Academy by James Morrison, who – being a practising painter (in Catterline at the same time as Joan Eardley) – was able to develop John’s skills and cultivate mature intellectual interests, particularly in Whistler, before his entry into Gray’s School of Art in Aberdeen in 1958, where he trained under Henderson Blyth.
Exceptionally, John already had a clear image of himself as a painter. He was briefly a scholarship student at Hospitalfield College of Art in Arbroath in 1962, where he painted in the company of Alexander Frazer and the young John Byrne. The east coast would figure again in John’s art, but not really until after a long period of development in Glasgow, where he set up permanent residence.
Almost until 1990 he worked in an impressive range of teaching, from school to community arts training, but in truth painting was his only vocation; and for the past decade he had managed to pursue this without interruption.
His professional successes received confirmation in 1982 with his election to the Royal Glasgow Institute of Fine Arts and in 1989 to the Royal Society of Portrait Painters. In bodies such as these, and through 19 solo and innumerable group exhibitions, he displayed an oeuvre of a breadth and depth equalled only by the late David Donaldson and William Crosbie. Paintings such as that of The Smith Family in the 1994 Royal Glasgow Institute show must rank as among the best family portraits of the post-war period.
His still lifes (a consistent hymn to the language of paint) in themselves would be a singular achievement, but one exceeded by the large body of figure compositions which will certainly stand as his greatest contribution. There has at times been a tendency to view John Boyd’s painting as a succession of influences, a judgment which almost completely misses the point about the seriousness and complexity of his exploration of the nature of painting.
With no shred of anxiety, he allowed judiciously selected work by admired artists from Leger to Permecke to wash over him, confident that the immersion would always leave John Boyd intact. It was an extraordinary strategy of constant development and renewal through the confrontation of ever-deepening problems.
And it worked, because his paintings have achieved a remarkable clarity of vision and at times astonishing complexity of form. Groups of people in east coast landscapes – carrying symbolic objects, often boats, wholly absorbed in their activity, unaware of being beheld – evoke a harmony, peace, and silence
In a gentle, unconflicted universe: people who have achieved the kind of grace that John himself strove after and eventually found. His final exhibition, achieved despite severe illness, was in August 2001 at the Edinburgh Festival.
Andrew studied at Glasgow School of Art and graduated with an Honours degree in 1997.
Andrew was born in Hamilton now lives and works in the Black Isle. He has exhibited regularly since graduating both in the UK and Europe and has been a contributor to our annual group shows since 2011. His third solo show with us will be in 2020.
Fergusson (1874-1961) was the most adventurous of the four Scottish Colourists. He was born in Leith, Edinburgh, but travelled to Paris for his artistic training. After annual visits to France for over ten years he settled in Paris around 1907 where he came to know the leading artists of the day, including Picasso and Braque, and Matisse and the other Fauves. He soon began to paint in the modern French style but returned to Britain in 1914 on the outbreak of war. France and French painting remained his inspiration and he returned to France in the 1920s until, again, war drove him back to Scotland. He settled in Glasgow, where he died in 1961, attracting the admiration of collectors and artists who saw in his work a true Scottish connection to the great movements of 20th century painting – Cubism and Fauvism.
Danny Ferguson (1925-1993)
John Cunningham RGID.Litt.1926 – 1998
Throughout his painting career he concentrated mainly on the genres of landscape, seascape and still life. He worked over many years internationally, in France, Spain, Italy and Ireland, returning to favoured locations, but the greatest number of his landscapes and seascapes are of the West Coast of Scotland, especially on the Ardnamurchan peninsula, on the most westerly point of mainland Scotland and on the island of Colonsay. The still lifes were painted in his elegant and unique Studio home in Glasgow, at Charing Cross.
John Cunningham exhibited at the Royal Scottish Academy, the Royal Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts and at many private Galleries in Glasgow, Edinburgh, London and elsewhere. His work is also held in numerous public, corporate and private collections worldwide.
In his lifetime he was a highly acclaimed and respected artist and since his death in 1998 his reputation has continued to grow. Art historians now see him in a direct line of tradition that stretches beyond the exuberant, strong and precisely balanced work of the Scottish Colourists to the immediate engagement with Scotland’s nature, scene and ethos one finds in the world of William McTaggart at the end of the nineteenth century. But nothing about his paintings is nostalgic or retrospective; they are rather instantaneously engaging and enlarging of vision and appetite for Scotland’s characteristic landscapes, seascapes and the poised, attentive qualities of the still lifes – the particular pleasures of linen, furniture, crockery, fruit and wine.
Sylvia graduated from Glasgow School of Art 1974 and has exhibited regularly in group and solo shows whilst in various teaching and graphics employment such as stage design and medical art.
Her work is characterised by strong involvement with colour and expressive movement. Themes include weather moods in landscape, atmospheric cityscapes and vibrant colours of flowers caught in sunshine.
During my lifetime Glasgow, the city in which I was born and raised, has undergone rapid development. For every building that is knocked down a million memories are torn down with it. As the banks of the Clyde turn from heavy industry to tourism, how many lives have been changed?
My paintings reflect my thoughts and feelings on a lost history of place and time.
We all have these histories which one day will be lost. I bring together drawings and photographs to create paintings that depict a narrative of the interaction people have with their surroundings.
My studio based on the edge of the city centre and the Eastend of Glasgow gives me the perfect environment to reflect this kaleidoscope of memory and place, helping me to capture a very distinct energy.
Philip Braham is a Scottish artist whose paintings and photographs emerge from the Northern European engagement with landscape as a metaphor for the human condition. Recent projects reflect on the temporal nature of our existence through personal recollection and collective history, set within the slowly evolving landscape that bears us forward. Fidelity to experience is fundamental to his practice, and this brings a poetic grace to his technical mastery of oil painting and silver-based photography.
Philip Braham graduated from Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design in 1980, and completed a Postgraduate at the Royal Academy of Fine Art in Holland the following year. He then undertook a year of research as visiting artist at the University of California at Los Angeles before returning to his native Scotland. In 1989 he joined the illustrious stable of Raab Gallery London/Berlin. His career includes 22 solo exhibitions to date; in addition to numerous group shows both nationally and internationally. Braham’s paintings and photographs are held in many public and private collections and art foundations. Among the awards received are the prestigious Royal Scottish Academy Guthrie Award for painting, and the Royal Scottish Academy Morton Award for lens-based work.
June Carey began her Art Education in the 1960s at Glasgow School of Art. In 1982 she became a member of Edinburgh Printmakers and began a lifelong love affair with printmaking. Discovering etching brought about a turning-point in her work and career. The process of making an etching set her imagination free. Suddenly she had found her subject, and has been exhibiting her work widely throughout Britain and abroad since.
Hock-Aun Teh’s painting shows a marrying of the spontaneity and expressive freedom found in the most highly prized of T’ang calligraphic masters to the colours and high-tech materials of modern western art. Teh’s work is often classified in the West as abstract expressionism. But if it is, it’s abstract expressionism with a considerable difference. For though born in Malaysia and working in Glasgow, he is by background and upbringing essentially Chinese and was carefully schooled in calligraphy.
Teh’s main source of inspiration are the experiences of his native Scotland and his regular travels around the world, particularly to the Far East. He passes through life as an observer, absorbing different cultures, traditions and ideas, separating out ‘the good bits’ from ‘the bad’, then bringing together what he wants to keep. The result is a different way of looking at things, a combining of cultures, of the East and of the West. He throws all of this at us through his work.
Eoghann MacColl was born 1970 in Inverness. He studied at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art in Dundee, and then completed his Masters in European Fine Art at Winchester School of Art in 1994.
Within his work there are constant questions. Where are we? Is it beautiful here? Is this how it is. Will the sun come out? His interest has grown in where or what we percieve as ‘the subject matter’. But also the contrast of the perception of ‘Highland’ and ‘Lowland’. Potentially confusing when many of us live between the two.
Leo’s inspiration is the natural world. He takes every opportunity to explore the landscapes of Scotland and the rest of Britain, walking, cycling, sketching and taking photos, using material gathered to complete paintings in the studio. Leo has a keen interest in natural history and environment and is supported by Scotrail in his ongoing project to explore Scotland’s rail-accessible landscapes which will culminate in publication of a book.
Born in 1951, James Tweedie lives and works in Glasgow. He paints the urban landscape, the parkland and odd corners of the city, usually, though not always,Glasgow. A surrealist at heart he always looks for a sense of mystery, of possibility in the atmosphere of a place. This he attempts to convey by means of a ‘poetic’ image, which can be touching, threatening or humerous. His work is very popular both in Scotland and South of the Border.
Tom Shanks is a master at capturing the grandeur and beauty of the Scottish landscape. There surely cannot be many artists who know and understand the character of these as intimately and affectionately as he does. He once explained to us that, although he shares people’s love of the landscape on clear, sunny, colourful days, he equally admires the scene in rainy, misty conditions, which are also so typical of the Scottish scene.
Andrew is predominantly figurative in his approach, using a very traditional basis for his painting. He is currently enjoying the lighter approach of painting ‘Alla prima’, bringing an immediate response to the subject onto the canvas. Inspired by the painting style of Sargeant and Raeburn, the finished result is fresh and shows a confidence of paint handling and composition.
Joe Fan, born in Hong Kong in 1962, came to Scotland to study Graphic Design at Aberdeen College of Commerce. He was then advised by an Aberdeen College lecturer to apply for a place at Gray’s School of Art to study Fine Art. After successfully gaining a place at Gray’s, one of his teachers was Gordon Bryce. Following graduation in 1988, Joe won the Miller Homes Young Scottish Artist of the Year, and was sent to Paris to spend time at the Cite Internationale des Arts from 1989-1990.
From 1990-1997, Joe returned to Aberdeen and became a Lecturer at Gray’s School of Art in Drawing and Painting. During this period, Joe also spent time as a visiting Lecturer at Cyprus College of Art, Paphos in 1994.
Ann Ross was born in Edinburgh and trained at Edinburgh College of Art. A travelling scholarship took her to Italy early in her painting career, and was to mark the beginning of a long journey inspired by memories of a different time and place. As she travels she records the light and colour within changing landscapes and the traces of decay and restoration in the facades of traditional buildings. In her studio she recalls these events and creates pictures in her preferred medium of watercolour.
Hazel Nagl Graduated in drawing and painting at Glasgow School of Art, after which she lived and worked at GSA’s Workshop at Culzean Castle where she developed a special interest in landscape painting and the Scottish garden in response to her surrounding.
Now living and working in Renfrewshire she is widely known as a still life and landscape painter, her preoccupations being with imparting a sense of light and space with an expressive impulse.
The ‘plein-air’ paintings of Alma Wolfson are wonderful interpretations of the rapidly-changing, rich colours of the Scottish landscape. Whatever the weather Alma takes on the challenge of immersing herself within the landscape, preferably close to water, and simply paints what she sees. Her willingness to work through all weathers is key to her success. She can capture, instantly, the effect of the changing light on highland landscapes. As the sun plays ‘hide and seek’ with the clouds, she makes quick adjustments to the colours in the sky and on the land. The effects are often breathtaking. The main influences on her work come from Joan Eardley and William Gillies but over the years she has developed her own style and built up a loyal following of collectors.
James Downie Robertson occupied an important position within Scottish art. The inspiration for many of his paintings was the Clyde coast and West Renfrewshire, where he lived and worked for more than 30 years. As he put it: “I have been subjected to the landscape every time I go out and it’s fascinating how it changes through winter, spring and summer.”
For Jimmy, making a painting of a landscape had nothing to do with the photographic or the illustrational. It had everything to do with his personal vision. Stan Bell, in a poem about Jimmy’s paintings called this “landscape in form, in content, painted meditation”.
He was born in Cowdenbeath, Fife. The family moved to Glasgow at the beginning of the Second World War and, after showing a talent for art from childhood, Jimmy enrolled at Glasgow School of Art in 1950. There he found himself in the company of several extraordinary fellow students – Alexander Goudie, Duncan Shanks and Alasdair Gray, to name but a few, and was introduced to the work of his teacher, David Donaldson, as well as Joan Eardley.
After graduating, Jimmy travelled in Spain with his friend Dr George Fraser and, on his return to Scotland, took up a teaching position at Keith Grammar School. A year later, in 1959, he returned to the art school as a part-time lecturer in the Drawing and Painting Department. Jimmy began to make a name for himself and, after his first solo exhibition at the Douglas and Foulis Gallery in Edinburgh in 1961, recognition followed with his election to the Royal Society of Painters in Watercolours in 1962 and his appointment as a full-time lecturer in Drawing and Painting in 1967 at Glasgow School of Art.
He was elected an associate of the Royal Scottish Academy in in 1974, becoming a full member in 1989. The Royal Glasgow Institute elected him as a member in 1980. At the same time, he staged numerous exhibitions, and his paintings were eagerly sought-after.
He favoured a directness of expression, and never used preparatory drawings or kept sketch books, seeking instead a spontaneous reaction. “Every painting is a struggle. I persevere until I think I have won.”
Jimmy was an influential teacher, being a member of staff for 40 years. With his passionate belief in painting and through the example of his own work, he set exemplary standards. Once the director reported a student complaint that he had spent too much time working in his studio. “That’s the best compliment I’ve ever had,” said Jimmy.
He was outspoken, irreverent and politically incorrect, but when it came to analysing what had gone wrong in a painting and suggesting the best means of addressing the problem, he was without peer.
James studied at Edinburgh College of Art 1974-78, and completed his postgraduate year there in 1979. McDonald has painted full-time since studying at Edinburgh, and his work has won numerous awards including the Andrew Grant Travelling Scholarship, British Council Travel Grant and the Alexander Stone Foundation Award. He has exhibited widely throughout the U.K. and overseas, and is in private and public collections including the Victoria & Albert Museum, London; BBC; STV and all major Scottish banks. In 2004 he established Naked Eye Fine Art, publishing cards and limited edition prints by contemporary Scottish artists.
Leon Morrocco was born in Edinburgh, the son of an artist with Italian roots. He studied at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art, The Slade, and Edinburgh College of Art. In 1968 he won an Italian government scholarship to study at the Accademia di Brera in Milan. He was lecturer in drawing and Painting at Edinburgh College of Art from 1965-1968, and then took up a similar post at Glasgow School of Art from 1969 and 1979.
In 1979 he moved to Australia as Head of the Department of Fine Art at the Chisholm Institute in Melbourne. He resigned in 1984 to devote all of his time to painting.
Leon Morrocco, who was elected an Associate of the Royal Scottish Academy in 1971, had eight solo exhibitions in the U.K before moving to Australia where he had a series of highly successful exhibitions in both Melbourne and Sydney.
In 1991, to herald his permanent move back to Britain, Leon held his first British Exhibition for twelve years. His paintings in oil, gouache and pastel, featured landscapes and still lifes from his travels over the last year in Spain, Italy, Matla, Greece, France and Australia. His works reveal both his outstanding draughtsmanship and his passion for colour. In 1998, a monogragh on his life and work, Leon Morrocco: Journeys and Observations’ was published.
His work can be found in many notable public and private collections, including The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, H.R.H Princess Margaret, The Scottish Arts Council, Leeds Art Gallery, The Nuffield Foundation, and Queensland Art Gallery.
Sandy Murphy is a contemporary Scottish artist and was born in Ayrshire, Scotland in 1956. He studied at Glasgow School of Art from 1976 until 1980, when he graduated with an honours degree. He completed a teacher training course and taught in Ayrshire schools until 1985. At this point he took the decision to paint professionally, full time.
Joyce’s work is mainly autobiographical based on past memories intertwined with present experiences, woven around the backcloth of the once fishing village of Footdee at the mouth of Aberdeen harbour where she lived for over 30 years. Her renowned exhibition ‘War Tourist’ was based on her Father’s war backed up by extensive research following in his footsteps through Europe and Tunisia.
She has been exhibiting since 1969 and her work is held in numerous private and public collections, both here and abroad.
Born in Irvine, Michael graduated from Duncan of Jordanstone Collage of Art in Dundee and as a postgraduate from Gray’s School of Art in Aberdeen.
Continuing the tradition of Scotland’s representational painting, his work values a sense of place, history, and Scottish cultural identity. With strong values in draughtsmanship, composition and observation.
His use of blighted and broken images of monuments, buildings and landscapes creates powerful statements that question attitudes to Scottish heritage and culture.
Sam’s paintings are a response to being in the landscape: they are shaped by the experience of being in a certain place at a certain time and the memory of this.
These experiences are the basis for his involvement with the paint, and from then on, his interaction with the paint takes over. The process allows him to show in painting, something of the place he is in or has been in, whether it’s the landscape of Shropshire, Cumbria or more recently, the urban environment of Glasgow and the landscapes of the West Coast.
‘There is a poetic sparseness to Cartman’s paintings of wide open spaces, in the skies or the sculpted buildings which look as if they have been there for all time. (Jan Patience, The Glasgow Herald)
Peter Howson graduated from Glasgow School of Art in 1983.
Throughout his career Peter Howson’s artworks have been celebrated by audiences and critics. Howson’s pictures have a blunt, sure grasp of the misery of the human condition- a clear eyed vision of the ultimate ugliness of human life. The ability to represent the core attributes of society from a raw, often unforgiving perspective has been paramount to Peter’s success. Peter’s personal life and most intimate moments are known to be carefully concealed in each of his artworks. However, during moments of great personal difficulty and adversity, Peter has practiced painting for his salvation and serenity. Therefore, we may find reassurance in the knowledge that while Peter continues to paint and produce his majestic works he can find peace within himself, one canvas at a time.
We have been showing Dundee graduate Martin Hill’s work since his degree show in 2009. His expressive use of paint is reminiscent of the Scottish Colourists and it is great to see the promise he showed six years ago continue to develop.
My work is based on recent responses to the rugged dramatic environment of Shetland and its visual drama of constantly changing elements against the coastal landscape and the North Sea.
Alice McMurrough is a Scottish artist whose work is concerned with the connectivity of experience. Ideas, observations and dreams are researched, edited and translated into visual statements which help her make sense of the world.
“My art re-interprets memories and cultural and mythological themes to engage with contemporary concerns.
I intertwine events, personal, cultural, real and imagined: my work is informed by family legends, religious fables and cultural myths. I create a reality where patterns and connections are made with apparently diverse subjects. I aim for a childlike clarity in observing experiences, before ritual and maturity strips life of its daily magic.
My work revels in the absence of an authoritative reading. I invite the viewer to engage with the paintings and derive their own interpretation.”
Glasgow artist Neil Macdonald is attracted by locations that allow him to explore strong, bold shapes of castles, dramatic landscapes and harbours. He achieves this through distortion of perspective, invention and editing, aiming to capture the subject’s unique sense of place.
“In my painting I aim to create a mood and poetry of place.
I am drawn to locations which exert a pull on my imagination through historic and mythic presence, particularly ancient harbours, castles and old townships. I am drawn to the strong, bold shapes that these subject offer .
Topographic accuracy is replaced by an imaginative response to the subject with light and shade playing a crucial role in creating mood.
I construct my personal space through distortion of perspective and viewpoint, invention and editing, aiming to capture an essence of the place.”
Local artist Louis McNally graduated from Gray’s School of Art in 1990. His distinctive paintings have unique haunting qualities unusual for work of such undoubted fine detailing and observation. His work is exhibited regularly in galleries throughout the UK and USA and are highly sought after.
Sheila McInnes was born in 1963 in Kirkcaldy, Fife. She qualified as an architect from Edinburgh College of Art in 1988 and worked in an architectural practice for six months but, wanting to follow her passion for painting and drawing, she decided to pursue a more artistic career. After working part-time, initially in a craft shop, followed by a job at a gallery in Edinburgh, Sheila began exhibiting her paintings in 1991.
Since then, Sheila McInnes has developed her highly individual style. Her subjects are very personal, everyday scenes of life captured in a moment, of people and dogs. Working in acrylic, she paints in layers and scrapes back using a varied choice of tools. Finishing with a varnish creates an ‘oil paint’ look to her work. Her work has been described as ‘a mixture of the naïve, the personal, and the sophisticated handling of colour and tone’.
A seminal figure in the history of twentieth century Scottish painting, Philipson’s influence was tangible on his peers and students alike, both through the dissemination of his very individual style and the encouragement he gave his many pupils.
Philipson studied at Edinburgh College of Art from 1936 to 1940 and joined the staff in 1947. During the Second World War, he served in India and Burma with the King’s Own Scottish Borderers. His early subjects were mainly landscapes, still lifes and interiors showing a debt to Kokoshka whose work Philipson had studied in depth. He was also close to William Gillies and John Maxwell who were co-members of the group known as the Edinburgh School which included Anne Redpath and William McTaggart.
In the 1950s Philipson was influenced by American Abstract Expressionism. It was at this time that he worked on his famous cockfighting series. He had his first solo show at Aitken Dott & Son (The Scottish Gallery) in 1954.
Like many Scottish artists of his generation, Philipson was well-known for his bold colours, heavy impasto and his free use of paint, yet he always retained a precise figurative element within his work. In 1960 Philipson visited Amiens Cathedral in Northern France. Gothic architecture combined with stained-glass windows provided the source for a number of paintings of church interiors and crucifixions during this period.
Philipson was a hugely popular figure within the Scottish and English art worlds and was elected an Honorary Royal Academician. His work has featured in several important and influential shows including ‘Seven Scottish Painters’ at the IBM gallery in New York. He was knighted for his services to the arts in Scotland.
Gail’s paintings are a testament to the beauty of the remote landscape from which she works and are filled with a sense of mystery and uncertainty; enabling a powerful and emotional response from the viewer as they gaze into the depths of these large, invigorating works.
From small water based paintings created outside, to the large, oil-based canvases rendered in her studio, Gail aims to replicate the energy and changing sense of light, space and movement found in the coastal landscapes she uses as her inspiration.
A graduate of the Glasgow School of Art in the 1970s, Gail Harvey has been living and working in Shetland since 1988. She has exhibited her work extensively in the UK over the past twenty years, including group and solo shows in Glasgow, Shetland, Edinburgh, Bath and Cork Street, London.
George Gilbert was born, grew up and was educated in Glasgow. He trained at Glasgow School of Art 1957-61 under William Armour & David Donaldson (1957 – 61) followed by a year of post graduate study (1961-62). For the next 25 years he taught in schools in Aberdeenshire, Glasgow & Fife before, in 1989, he took early retirement and began to paint full time.
He has exhibited widely in the UK with many solo shows as well as group and mixed exhibitions including the RSW, RSA and the RGI, the Cleveland Drawing Competition, the Sunday Times Water Colour Competition and the RSW summer open.
Ronald F. Smith (born 1946) graduated from Glasgow School of Art (GSA) in 1969.
At that time the GSA was producing many of the best painters in the country and Smith, taught by Donaldson, Shanks and Robertson, was no exception. His work is inspired by his fascination with the Mediterranean and the Highlands of Scotland.
Best known for his sweeping yet subtle landscapes, their detail picked out delicately in slight, contrasting hues, Smith is unaware of how talented he is. He is highly regarded amongst his artist friends but overbearing self-promotion and relentless focus on his image as an artist does not interest him. Instead he paints away in his Glasgow studio with dedication and modesty, totally absorbed in creating his next painting, and facing the challenges it brings with integrity and creativity.
Lachlan Goudie was born in Glasgow, Scotland, in 1976. After studying English Literature at Cambridge University he received the Levy-Plumb scholarship, a yearlong painting residency at Christ’s College.
In 1999 Lachlan was awarded the R.S.P. Prize for painting at the Royal Glasgow Institute of Fine Arts, and in 2001 the N.S. MacFarlane prize at the Royal Scottish Academy.
He graduated in June 2004 from Camberwell College of Arts with a degree in Fine Art and Painting.
Alexander Goudie RP. RGI. (1933-2004) is widely acclaimed as having been one of Scotland’s finest figurative painters.
Goudie was born in the Renfrewshire town of Paisley in 1933. He studied at the Glasgow school of Art under William Armour, David Donaldson and Benno Schotz. For many years he was a tutor at the school, before dedicating himself to his own studio work.
As a portraitist his sitters included Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, Lord Chancellor Lord Mackay of Clashfern, Billy Connolly and a host of other figures drawn from the worlds of politics, commerce and entertainment. Although he achieved great renown as a portrait painter Alexander Goudie distinguished himself in a range of other creative spheres.
Born in Aberdeenshire in 1946, Michael Scott (Mike Scott) studied Political Science at Liverpool before doing a one year’s teacher training course in Huddersfield. After moving to Glasgow, Scott took a full-time research post at Glasgow University followed by a lecturing post at the re-named Glasgow Caledonian University. By 1997 demand for his work had become so great that he had to resign his post at the University to paint full time.
Scott studied painting part-time at the Glasgow School of Art under John Boyd for a period of some fifteen years.
Carlo Rossi was born in Johnstone, Renfrewshire, in 1921, and studied at the Glasgow School of Art, graduating in 1943, and in Italy. He was elected a member of the Royal Scottish Society of Painters in Watercolour in 1973 and of the Royal Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts in 1978. He died in 2010.
Music was a dominant force in his life and subsequently in his art musical instruments often appeared in his paintings. Rossi often compared his work to the music of Bach. His still life works were carefully orchestrated fugues of shape and colours linked together and controlled by the geometry of the line.
Barga, a small town perched on the summit of a peak in the middle of the Tuscan Apennines, became his spiritual home. It has magnificent views. The many paintings of the hill-town are filled with warm colours depicting the red-roofed buildings, luxuriant foliage and represent magically on the canvas the full impact of the atmosphere of an Italian midsummer’s day. Rossi applied the paint with great virtuosity, tempered always with his sensitive and poetic nature.
Whether it is a response to the ever-changing sunlight, revealing myriad colours in the facades and the rippling waters of the Canal Grande and lagoons, his paintings inject the vitality of life-force that is Italy.
John Houston is recognised as a major figure in Scottish painting of the last half-century. Born in 1930, he studied at Edinburgh College of Art, where he subsequently taught for many years. Houston’s art is renowned for its bold, expressionistic treatment of his preferred subject matter, most often the Scottish landscape, which he paints with intense feeling. His use of gestural brushstrokes and vibrant colours enables him to capture the atmospheric mood of any setting.
David Donaldson was born in Lanarkshire and studied at Glasgow School of Art from 1932 to 1937. He was awarded a Travelling Scholarship to Florence and Paris which he fitted in around his part-time teaching at GSA 1938-44. He took on a full-time position from 1944 and became the highly influencial Head of Drawing and Painting there from 1968. Donaldson was appointed Her Majesty’s Painter and Limner in Scotland from 1977 until his death in 1996. With a scope of subjects covering still life and landscape as well as literary, biblical and allegorical subjects – not forgetting being a leading portrait painter.
Born in Glasgow in 1948, James is the only son of parents who worked as carpet designers at Templeton’s Carpet Factory in Glasgow. His earliest memory of a painting is by Picasso of a lady whom he firmly believed to be his mother. James enjoyed drawing and painting at school but not much else and in 1966, without any formal qualifications, he was accepted unconditionally at Glasgow School of Art, where he stayed until 1970, and where, he says he would have been happy to stay for the rest of his life.
James paints in gouache with a delicate touch and a faultless technique. His paintings have an obsessive quality, they are witty and enigmatic and depict an erotic, fetishistic intensely private world. He admires many artists, in particular George Grosz, Hans Bellmer, Chaim Soutine and Paul Delvaux.
Now retired from teaching he can devote himself to the strange worlds of Fernando Rey and his associates.
Kirkham has been a well ken’t face around Glasgow for longer than he would care to remember, as a stalwart of the Art Club, Secretary of the RGI for many a year, and lecturer in charge of the night school at GSA where he encouraged the career of many now popular painters. Norman is a technically gifted painter and displays the energy of a painter half his age.
Felix graduated from Duncan of Jordanstone back in 1996 and has steadily built a name for himself at the same time as pursuing a successful teaching career. Primarily concerned with the human form – especially the subtleties of skin tones – his paintings have begun to explore the subtle narrative suggested by the folds of fabrics which hint at the recent pose and movements of the figures they drape.
Mhairi McGregor studied at the Glasgow School of Art, graduating in 1993. Winner of numerous travel scholarships McGregor’s passion lies in landscape painting. Her emotional response to different locations comes through greatly in her paintings. Initial sketches are developed into more abstract works and her landscapes evoke a sense of place effected by a rich, fluid impasto paint surface.
‘I’m always trying to get the most out of the few colours I use and get them to play off against each other. I’ve moved away from brushwork too. I like to layer up the paint; slab it on until two strong colours are shining through… The main direction of my work is to sketch from life and develop those initial paintings into more abstract works. I never want to lose sight completely of what it was that inspired me to paint a particular scene. My main aim is to focus in on that first response to a landscape and to continue and expand that idea into a more concise conclusion.’
Ayrshire artist Jock MacInnes graduated from Glasgow School of Art in 1967. His individual approach to painting (he prepares all his own gesso boards and canvases and manipulates the surface) helps create a distinct mood and atmosphere. This helps to give the work its special character; he doesn’t just paint onto a surface, he makes marks and paints into it.
Over the past two years he has spent the majority of his time in southern France enjoying life and enjoying painting.
After graduating from the Glasgow School of Art in 1988, where she won the Landscape Prize and the Armour Prize for Still Life, she continued her training at the Kunstakedimi in Oslo, Winchester School of Art, in Barcelona and at the University of Southampton.
Drawing her inspiration from nature, Barr’s paintings reflect her continued interest in capturing the vitality of the British landscape. Colour is a key element in her work and her expressive canvasses explore panoramic sea views, rolling fields and hills and dynamic floral compositions.
Andrew takes his inspiration from the surrounding countryside of his home in Lanarkshire and from his love of Japanese art. He aims to simplify shapes and spaces, stripping them to their basic elements to create an atmosphere rather than a photographic representation.
In the years since graduating from Edinburgh College of Art Adam Kennedy has laid the foundations of a rather successful career, the highlight being the last winner of the highly coveted, but now sadly defunct, Aspect Prize in 2011.
Adam’s paintings are influenced by memories of his childhood growing up in Glasgow, particularly those of the shipyards on the River Clyde.
I work quickly and with immediacy. That is not to say that pictures are conceived speedily. In most cases my solutions are arrived at after months, if not years of consideration and dry runs. I use watercolour along with ink, resins and foils. I hope for work that intrigues and attracts the viewer
My approach to painting is in a spirit of adventureand exploration and I was encouraged in this by my tutors at Edinburgh College of Art. Amoungst whom were Sir Robin Philpson, David Michie and Robert Callander. I taught in Edinburgh schools for twelve years. After a further fourteen years as lecturer in Art & Design at Edinburghs Telford College, I turned to full time painting and some guest lecturing at Edinburgh University, The Embroiderers Guild and The City Art Centre, Edinburgh.
Norman Edgar was born in Paisley in 1948, and studied at the Glasgow School Art (1966-70) under David Donaldson. He later taught art himself, becoming a full-time painter in 1990.
Edgar’s style is spontaneous and painterly.His work is in the tradition both of late 19th century flower painters such as Fantin Latour and Manet, and of the Scottish Colourists. He paints with pure colour, sensitive to the nuances of reflected and refracted hues, but is not afraid to use the glossy blacks Manet employed.
James Fullarton is essentially a modern day Colourist, he enjoys painting in the west of Scotland, using a broad palette with colour always the dominant feature. His subject matter includes landscape, portraiture and still life executed in both oil and acrylic. He is best-known for his wonderful still lifes of poppies, marguerites etc vigorously rendered with broad, powerful strokes on large canvases. They speak as much of the process of painting itself and of the feelings this brings out in the painter, as it does of the source of inspiration and colour before him.
He also paints the landscape around him in a manner that hovers on abstraction at times, and captures the exposed openness of the broad fields he sees.
Gregor studied drawing and painting at Edinburgh College of Art under Sir Robin Philipson and James Cumming 1962-66. A post -graduate scholarship with a highly-commended endorsement was followed by a travelling scholarship to Florence and Rome 1966-7.
He lives in Kilcreggan, Argyll and Bute, in a house which overlooks the Clyde estuary with superb views of Arran, Holy Loch, Loch Long with Gareloch just round the corner and extensive open vistas towards Glasgow up river. Most of his subject matter is drawn from these lochs, the surrounding hills and coastal edges. Variations in weather patterns, atmospheric changes and subtle changes of colour, shapes and textures all forming vital compositional elements.
After graduating in 1999 from Edinburgh University with a sell-out degree show, Sarah began her career as a full-time artist based in Edinburgh. Her work focuses on the Scottish coastline, (and that of Northern Ireland, where she now lives) a passion she has had since childhood holidays on the west coast and sailing excursions around the Hebrides. Her paintings are often large in scale (up to 12 x 6 feet), colourful, yet at the same time subtle. Her understanding of the nature of the sea is evident in her work. The viewer is enveloped by the vastness of the sea and sky. The depth and distance of the sea and sky are constant features in her work. Most of the paintings are created in the studio from photographs and sketches executed on-the-spot, at the beach. She travels regularly to the west coast and islands for inspiration.
She uses household emulsion, oil, sand and varnish to create a variety of surfaces to describe the different textures found at the sea-shore and the mood and weather of the place. For Sarah, the sea remains a constant inspiration for her work.
Glen Scouller was born in Glasgow in 1950 and trained at Glasgow School of Art. He has exhibited widely in Scotland and London as well as in France and New York and his paintings are in many private, public and corporate collections.
Like many Scottish painters, Scouller has found a constant source of inspiration in the landscape and lifestyle of France. He has been particularly attracted to Provence and many of his paintings show his delight in the climate, architecture and landscape of the hills and villages above the Cote d’Azure. The simple pleasures of life in Provence, and in particular in the tiny hamlets of La Gaude and Callion, drawn him back every summer.
Peter Graham was born in Glasgow in 1959. He attended the Glasgow School of Art, graduating in 1980. In 2000 Peter was elected to Full Membership of The Royal Institute of Oil Painters, R.O.I.
Peter has earned a reputation as one of Britain’s most gifted and distinctive Modern Colourists. His work is often related to the Modern Scottish School but Peter has a flamboyant style which is unique, – detailed brush work combined with loose fluid strokes creating vibrant contrasts of pure colour, line and tone.
As his work develops his fascination with colour has taken the dominant role. In the winter months within his studio he delved deeply into the still life genre, creating some of his most stunning compositions, again with colour the dominant theme but reflecting the heightened sense of atmosphere and passion that comes directly from painting in the beauty of the Mediterranean. Recently, successful exhibitions in London have allowed Peter to take on extra studio space and take his still life work to larger scale.
Mary Armour (1902 – 2000) studied Drawing and Painting at The Glasgow School of Art from 1920. In 1925, after a post-diploma year and teacher training, she became an art teacher, and in 1927 she married the landscape and figure painter William Armour (1903–1979).
Armour exhibited at a number of prestigious institutions from the 1930s onwards, including the Royal Academy, Royal Scottish Academy, Royal Scottish Society of Painters in Watercolour, Scottish Society of Artists, and Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts. She was awarded the Guthrie prize at the Royal Scottish Academy in 1937, and in 1941 she was elected an associate at the Academy. In addition to her art practice, Armour was a lecturer in still-life painting at the GSA from 1951 – 1961.
Awards and honours included full membership of the Royal Scottish Academy in 1958, the Cargill prize at the RGIFA in 1972, full membership of the RFIFA in 1977, and an honorary Doctorate from Glasgow University in 1982. In later life she was elected honorary president of both the GSA and the RGIFA.
Duncan Shanks studied at Glasgow School of Art in the early 1950s and after graduating became a part-time lecturer at the School, where he taught until 1979. he has exhibited widely in Scotland and the UK and is represented in public and private collections across the country, including Scottish Arts Council, Arts Council of Great Britain, Glasgow Art Gallery, Dundee Art Gallery, Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, Swansea, Lillie Art Gallery, Milngavie, Government Art Collection, Edinburgh City Art Centre, Glasgow University, Edinburgh University
I’ve shown Duncan’s work for nearly forty years, first at The Fine Art Society and from 1992 here in my own gallery. His colour and dynamic compositions have always attracted me. He paints landscape with an emotional commitment which points out to us the beauty, the power and grandeur of the so-called ‘lowland’ hills, the moors and glens of the Clyde Valley where he has lived for nigh on fifty years. In all weathers he can be found on Tinto or its neighbours making the sketches that he transforms over time into visceral paintings in the studio.
b. 1922 – 2018
David Martin lived and worked in Scotland.
Regarded by many as one of the finest still life and landscape painters having worked in Scotland in the past 100 years, David Martin’s work is held in many major collections including The Arts Council of Scotland, The City of Edinburgh Art Collection, Perth Museum and Art Gallery, The Dick Institute, Kilmarnock, Robert Fleming and Company Ltd, Linklaters and Paine, Lord MacFarlane, The Earl of Moray, Credit Lyonnais Bank, Warburg Asset Management and the Clydesdale Bank. A major retrospective of his work was held at Perth Museum and Art Gallery in 1999.
1993 Elected Honorary Member of Society of Scottish Artists
1991 Member SAAC
1986 Meets Marc Chagall in Glasgow
1983 Retires from teaching
1961 Elected Member of Royal Scottish Society of Painters in Watercolour
1959 Elected member of Royal Glasgow Institute of Fine Arts
1949 Elected Professional Member SSA
Design for Fabric selected by Arts Council for inclusion in an exhibition in the Design Centre, Glasgow. Printed by Gayonne Fabrics Ltd
1949-59 Studied design at evening classes with Robert Stewart, GSA
1948-9 Jordanhill Teacher Training College
1946-48 Glasgow School of Art under David Donaldson
Meets the painter Isobel Smith at Glasgow Scholl of Art
1946 Instructor in art under the Forces Educational and Vocational Training Scheme
1940-42 Glasgow School of Art
1934-9 Educated Govan high School
Tom Mabon was born in 1956 in Kirkcaldy, Fife and trained at Gray’s School of Art, Aberdeen from 1974 to 1978. For the past 29 years he has lived on the Black Isle. The “insignificant” views of it’s landscape, the rural structures and the weather, are recurring themes in his work.
Michael Corsar studied at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art in Dundee from 1992–1996 and graduated BA (Hons) in Fine Art, Drawing and Painting.
Light and, specifically, its interaction with clouds, water and architecture is what inspires him. Starting with an almost black canvas he gradually teases out images, removing darkness, illuminating the scene. Working on the whole from memory his paintings are reflections of inner thoughts and feelings at specific moments rather than straight forward representations of an actual place, leaving space for the viewer to imbue the painting with their own contemplations.
In 1993 Gordon Mitchell held his first solo exhibition at the Roger Billcliffe Gallery. It was an immediate success and in the years since then Gordon has confirmed his position as one of our most popular and sought-after artists.
Gordon Mitchell’s world continues to captivate us and his most recent paintings only serve to confirm the hold that his eye, hand and ear have over our own perceptions of the world around us. Mitchell is often labelled a surrealist – he thinks not – although he certainly wants his work to be considered thought provoking. His inspiration can be a group of words, a topical news story – but more usually it’s a visual pun that provides the basis for his paintings.
Last winter’s extended snowfalls prompted me to indulge the glorious imagery in and around Glasgow, bathed in crystalline light, and to explore questions like how do you paint serenity, or that quilted silence all around?
These subjective issues are central to my work in that I believe I succeed if I communicate through paint what it feels like to be in a landscape, and to confront what is the magical quality of this place and time rather than rendering its purely visual components.
This is a journey fraught with pitfalls where, clearly, previous solutions will not necessarily suffice and stylistic continuity may not be evident. However, that frisson of peering over the edge holds compulsive attraction for me and fires up the symphonic opportunities of addressing a virgin canvas or the refined bone structure of a watercolour. I hope you enjoy sharing where I have been led.
Ethel Walker was born in Ayrshire, Scotland, in 1941. She graduated from the Glasgow School of Art in 1964 where she had been taught by David Donaldson, later head of Drawing and Painting at Glasgow School of Art and the Queen’s Limner in Scotland. Beginning her career as a teacher, by the age of twenty seven she was a full time artist. She has exhibited regularly in Scotland and London.
I love painting flowers! I can think of no better way to bring colour, great patterns and a hundred surprises into a painting. I love (in order of appearance) snowdrops, anemones, crocuses, tulips, poppies, pansies, winter pansies, Christmas roses, and back to snowdrops – for me these all have the best shapes and personalities.
Christine McArthur trained at Glasgow School of Art, 1971-76, and then taught until 1980 when she began painting full time. She has exhibited widely in the UK, particularly in London and Scotland, as well as South Africa, Hong Kong, Moscow and the USA. She was commissioned by John Lewis plc to provide murals for their Glasgow store and Peter Jones in Chelsea. She is the winner of several prizes from the Scottish Arts Council and the RSW and is represented in public and private collections across the UK and USA.