Join us for a lively conversation between artist Leon Morrocco RSA and poet and playwright Liz Lochhead on the occasion of our exhibition Leon Morrocco: Long Road Home. The conversation will delve into Leon's student years in the 60s, his lifelong love of travel and his reflections on being a painter in the contemporary art world.
Leon Morrocco RSA is the first son of Scottish-Italian artist Alberto Morrocco RSA. Having trained at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art, Dundee; the Slade School of Art, London; and Edinburgh College of Art; he went on to teach painting in Edinburgh, Dundee and Glasgow before moving to Australia where he was Head of Fine Art at Chisholm Institute, Melbourne. Since returning to the UK in 1992, Morrocco has focused solely on his practice and has exhibited extensively. Morrocco was elected an Associate of the Royal Scottish Academy in1971 and an Academician in 2005.
Liz Lochhead HonFRSE was born in Motherwell in 1947 and attended Glasgow School of Art (GSA) from 1965 to1970, graduating from the Department of Drawing and Painting. She had by that time written most of the poems that came out in her best-selling first collection of poems Memo for Spring in 1972, which, co-incidentally, has just been re-published in a 50th Anniversary Edition. Leon Morrocco arrived to teach at GSA in her last term and, in one brief tutorial, gave her important encouragement to go back to basics and use the resource of her sketchbooks, which he thought full of the interest and life that were getting lost in her painting. During the 70s Liz taught art in various comprehensive schools in the West of Scotland and Bristol until, after a couple of years in Toronto and New York, she became a full time writer in 1986. Since then she has been based in Glasgow writing four collections of poetry, more than a score of plays, the best known probably Mary Queen Of Scots Got Her Head Chopped Off, the comedy Perfect Days and Medea,revived in this year's Edinburgh International Festival by the National Theatre of Scotland. Liz was the second Makar (National Poet of Scotland) from 2011 to 2016, and received the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry for 2015.