JAMES CUMMING RSA [Touring exhibition]

Opening Times:
Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday: 9am - 5pm | Tuesday and Thursday: 9am - 9pm | Sunday: 11am - 5pm

JAMES CUMMING RSA [Touring exhibition]

Opening Times:
Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday: 9am - 5pm | Tuesday and Thursday: 9am - 9pm | Sunday: 11am - 5pm

JAMES CUMMING RSA: SYMBOLS OF THE MIND
Exhibition Gallery, Linlithgow Burgh Halls
The Cross, Linlithgow, West Lothian,
EH49 7AH. T 01506 282720

Linlithgow Burgh Halls

In Linlithgow in 1988, James Cumming completed a mural called Community: A Festival of Time. It is a masterful piece of painting befitting of rediscovery.  This spring the Academy is touring the Symbols of a Mind exhibition from its collection to the hometown of the mural, reconnecting the artist with the mural, its history and its people. 

 

James Cumming (1922-1991) was without doubt one of the most talented painters and original artists practising in Scotland in the 20th century. He created highly individual work that was beautiful and expertly imagined with an unbelievably fine finish of surface. His technical knowledge and skill were unsurpassed; his paintings are in the same perfect condition now as they were when they left his easel half a century ago.

As a young artist he developed trademark figures, far away from civilisation on the Isle of Lewis, before turning his mind to a personal abstraction that grew from the origins of life, symbols and microbiology. The meeting of colour and line, of geometry, structure and mutation were all deep concerns that flowed through his work, while within his still lifes he developed his own Post-Cubist style that created fascinating distillations of objects in pictorial space.

In 2006 the Royal Scottish Academy received one of its most significant gifts from the family of James Cumming RSA. In keeping with the unique living nature of the RSA collections, the gift comprised finished paintings, studies, sketchbooks, studio objects and archival material, which together offer an unprecedented insight into the work, processes and mind of the artist.

“I’m only interested in the truth of reality, and I must employ amnesia in order to discover it…If I don’t forget all that I’ve done then everything I do hence-forth will be based on one matrix of thought…To trace different aspects of the truth and compose them in order to discover precisely your vision is my aim and always has been my aim.”

There is no Scottish artist that compares with James Cumming and this exhibition celebrates his last twenty years by bringing to light works from the artist’s studio that have never been seen before.

RCNS Collection Maritime