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Fergusson’s Women


Fergusson’s Women 7 September – 1 October 2011

The Scottish Gallery 16 Dundas Street, Edinburgh EH3 6HZ Tel 0131 558 1200 Email mail@scottish-gallery.co.uk www.scottish-gallery.co.uk

Front cover: Three Bathers, Antibes 1925 signed and dated verso watercolour 33 x 25.5 cms Inside front cover: Meg watercolour and pencil 19.5 x 15 cms


Red Shawl, Portrait of Mrs Elizabeth Dryden oil on canvas 198 x 96.5 cms Š The Fergusson Gallery, Perth & Kinross Council


J.D. Fergusson (1874-1961) It is fifty years since the death of John Duncan Fergusson, one of Scotland’s greatest artists. He had a long productive life and through the generosity of his remarkable widow Margaret Morris and the Foundation she set up in his name much of his work and a huge archive of drawings, writings and papers are housed in the Fergusson Gallery in Perth. There is no doubt that he would have been enormously proud and gratified as a Celt, Scot and free-thinker that his life and work would be commemorated in this way. Over the years there have been several important exhibitions which have placed Fergusson in a National and even International context, most importantly Elizabeth Cumming’s Colour Rhythm Dance at Glasgow Art Gallery in 1985. The process of evaluation and reappraisal continues today and an exhibition at The Hunterian later this year will mark another significant milestone on that road. Fergusson was without doubt an international figure who lived his life through his art without compromise or self-doubt. His friendships with many of the foremost figures of the avantgarde, his lofty almost ascetic brand of bohemianism, his loyalty to his friends and the flame of his calling mark him out amongst his contemporaries. He is Scotland’s Picasso. Like the great Catalan one of his enduring obsessions was the opposite sex seen at different times as fashion icon, earth goddess, sex object and feminist. In a modest exhibition to mark this significant anniversary we are delighted to have gathered together works on paper and a few paintings on or around this theme. Fergusson was attracted to strong, independent women and led his life surrounded by models, art students and later the dancers studying with the Margaret Morris Dance Movement Schools. He drew them constantly, draped and undraped, each work is an act of love and admiration in recognition of the vital creative role they played in his artistic life and beyond that as the symbolic representatives for creativity, fecundity and what we might (with minor historical revisionism) call his belief in Gaia. Guy Peploe Managing Director, The Scottish Gallery


Meg contĂŠ drawing 25 x 20 cms Provenance: Gifted by Margaret Morris Fergusson and thence by descent


Figure Studies of Two Young Girls, Paris Plage contĂŠ drawing 21 x 16 cms


Anne Estelle Rice oil on board 67.5 x 57.5 cms


At the Table contĂŠ drawing 19 x 11.5 cms


Plumed Hat 1910 contĂŠ drawing 20 x 11 cms


Meg Dancing a Toccata 1914 contĂŠ drawing 22 x 18 cms


The Two Suitors contĂŠ drawing 21 x 16 cms


Luxembourg Gardens, Evening c.1906 signed and inscribed with title and date verso oil on panel 18 x 23 cms


Woman at a Table contĂŠ drawing 14.5 x 9.5 cms


Study of a Dancer 1915 contĂŠ drawing 35.5 x 25.5 cms


Rita Prost contĂŠ drawing 24.5 x 20 cms


First Study for Rhythm contĂŠ drawing 19.5 x 15 cms


Profile Study contĂŠ drawing 13.5 x 12 cms


Trio, Paris 1907 contĂŠ drawing 11.5 x 13 cms


The Alhambra, Leicester Square, Evening oil on panel 24 x 18.5 cms


An Elegant Woman in a Hat (with Admirer) contĂŠ drawing 20.5 x 12 cms


Ida Rubenstein c.1918 contĂŠ drawing 14 x 11 cms


Reclining Nude 1910 contĂŠ drawing 25 x 32 cms


Study of a Girl contĂŠ drawing 15 x 13 cms


Meg in a Headscarf contĂŠ drawing 25 x 20 cms


Voiles Indiennes 1910 oil on cardboard 66 x 56 cms Š The Fergusson Gallery, Perth & Kinross Council


Published by The Scottish Gallery for the exhibition Fergusson’s Women 7 September – 1 October 2011 ISBN 978-1-905146-59-8 Designed by kennethgray.co.uk Printed by Stewarts All rights reserved. No part of this catalogue may be reproduced in any form by print, photocopy or by any other means, without the permission of the copyright holders and of the publishers.

Back cover: Meg in a Summer Hat conté drawing 24 x 19 cms


16 Dundas Street, Edinburgh EH3 6HZ Tel 0131 558 1200 Email mail@scottish-gallery.co.uk Web www.scottish-gallery.co.uk


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