Saltire Society celebrates The Glasgow Boys

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The Arran branch of Saltire Society recently held their penultimate event of the season at the Arran Lodge at Altachorvie. The Saltire Society celebrates Scottish culture in all its different manifestations.

A very healthy audience of some 40 people heard with interest local artist and Corrie resident John Inglis talked with authority and dry wit about the historical background to and the influences of The Glasgow Boys, that loosely affiliated group of Glasgow painters who defined a Scottish painterly style between the 1880s and the early 1900s.

In this slide-illustrated event, John talked about how the Scottish art collective were effectively reacting against a grandiose Victorian sentimentality and melodrama in painting. That in a way they wanted to reverse the old order of the high classical and the picturesque for a more intimate vision of life.

John told how The Glasgow Boys opted for less usual viewpoints, how they invited the spectator to be part of the narrative and not held at bay by the awe of the spectacular.

John alluded, commenting on one particular painting A Hind’s Daughter by Guthrie, to the matter of factness of the scene. That Guthrie was ‘telling it the way it is’, opting for realism which made the labour being portrayed appear more dignified. Earlier John had shown a picture of Millet’s Gleaners citing it as one of the influences that the Glasgow Boys would have seen and absorbed in their European travels.

The audience had a chance to see an original Glasgow Boys painting by Alexander Ignatius Roche generously loaned for the evening by Colin Milne. Saltire Society are also grateful for the continuing support of Joni Keen and Altachorvie who support the society’s endeavour.

                                                                                                                             Tim Pomeroy