Monday, 8 July 2013

1958 - On the Canongate, Edinburgh

On the Canongate, Edinburgh 1958
24.1 x 36.1 cm
Sold [November 2012] for £13,750 inc. premium
Signed and Dated 'LS Lowry 1958' (lower right);
Titled and Dated again 'On the Canongate/Edinburgh Sept 1958' (lower left)


With The Stone Gallery, Newcastle Upon Tyne

In the 1950s Lowry visited Edinburgh with Ann Hilder, a close friend, possible goddaughter and keen artist herself. She was also one of Lowry's most elusive sitters, seen for example in Portrait of Ann (1957, Collection The Lowry, Salford). The pair visited the Festival "because she knew people who could get tickets for everything" (Pat Cooke, quoted in S. Rohde, L.S. Lowry, A Biography, Lowry Press, Salford, 1979, p.273), and stayed in Musselburgh just south of the city. 

The present work dates from this period, with Lowry sketching figures on the Canongate at the foot of the Royal Mile looking up to smog-soaked city skyline beyond. Lowry travelled across Britain with Ann, going as far afield as Devon and Edinburgh, and in the early 1960s took her to the Stone Gallery in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne. The owners knew the artist well, and as Carol Ann Lowry later recalled "'Ann came in here the other day,' he [the artist] announced to them casually over a cup of tea some days later. 'Why ever didn't she make herself known?' they inquired, irritated at having missed a sight of this elusive lady in Lowry's life. 'She wouldn't do that.' He said, 'she's a very private person.'" (Carol Ann Lowry, quoted Op.Cit).

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