study days

The Scottish Colourists

  • Thursday 16 January 2020
  • Lecturer: Roger Billcliffe

British reaction to new developments in painting in Paris before 1914 was concentrated in the work of four young men from Scotland, whom we now call the Scottish Colourists. Although they all exhibited regularly in London before 1939 they were virtually, even deliberately, overlooked by the British (effectively English) art establishment which preferred its own Anglophile account of British reactions to Cubism, Fauvism et al in early twentieth-century Paris.

Since the 1970s, often through the support of The Fine Art Society in London, the achievements of these four young men have been more widely recognised and acknowledged. Roger Billcliffe will look at the careers of each of them – J D Fergusson, S J Peploe, F C B Cadell and G Leslie Hunter. Although often exhibiting as a group they rarely, if ever, all four worked together, tending to form volatile pairings over their lives. These four sessions will trace how their work developed – together and individually.


*Accessibility: Please note that the lecture theatre at Lettsom House is on the first floor. The Medical Society of London, who own the building, are unable to install a lift due to the listed status of the building.



Roger Billcliffe is a leading expert on Scottish art. He has published extensively on the Glasgow Boys and Charles Rennie Mackintosh as well as the Scottish Colourists. He was one of the curators of the Glasgow Boys exhibition at Kelvingrove and the Royal Academy. He also runs his own gallery in Glasgow.

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This event is fully booked. Members may apply for one of the limited number of waiting list places, but no payment should be made. If a place becomes available, the waiting list will be contacted in chronological order and payment will be requested at that time. Please contact the event organiser if in doubt.

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