The Scottish National Gallery's Colourists series wraps up with JD Fergusson

The Scottish National Gallery's Colourists series wraps up with JD Fergusson

The largely self-taught painter was inspired by Parisian life and dance pioneer Margaret Morris

Sometimes, if you want to learn about life, you have to get out of the classroom. So proved John Duncan Fergusson, the largely self-taught colourist, who rejected a classical training in Edinburgh for a life less ordinary on the continent.

A proud Scot, Fergusson swiftly became immersed in Parisian society, hung out with Picasso, and took inspiration from impressionism and fauvism. His work was described by André Dunoyer de Segonzac as 'a deep and pure expression of his immense love of life', and his paintings still retain their relevance, vibrancy and rich sense of colour 50 years after his death. 

His work was greatly influenced by his partner, the dance pioneer Margaret Morris, and it shows in the 100 paintings, sculptures, works on paper and archive items on display at Modern Two. This anticipated retrospective is the third and final exhibition in the Scottish National Gallery's Colourists series, all of which have been sensitively curated by Alice Strang, with its relevance and impact already evident in the huge response by commercial galleries around Scotland.

Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art Two, Edinburgh, until Sun 15 Jun.


The Scottish Colourists Series: JD Fergusson

John Duncan Fergusson was the most ebullient of the Scottish Colourists. He was the one most eager to absorb developments in French art, and his lifelong interest in the human form helped rekindle his artistic career when the dancer and choreographer Margaret Morris became his partner; she and her dance schools inspired…