Colquhoun, Robert (1914-62)

(1914-62) Robert Colquhoun was born in Scotland at Kilmarnock in 1914 and attended the Kilmarnock Academy, where he was encouraged by his art teacher Mr J. Lyle. His work featured in the school magazine “Goldberry”. He won a scholarship to the Glasgow School of Art and studied there from 1933-38; a further scholarship enabled him to study in Italy. He also spent time in France, Holland, and Belgium before moving to London in 1941. During the war, Colquhoun was an ambulance driver in the Civil Defence Corps by day and painted by night. Colquhoun’s paintings incorporate the angular aesthetic which unites their work; his cubist figures resemble Picasso’s and communicate a raw emotional honesty. His landscapes are often dark and organic, evoking the romantic scenes of Samuel Palmer with their twinkling skies and rounded hillocks. His work touches upon contemporary themes; if only through stylistic allusion, it has the impact to represent modern issues. It also embodies many of the converging artistic trends of the post-war years, and thereby forms a rich cultural resource.

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