Peter McLarenBorn: 1964
Place of Birth: Edinburgh
McLaren was the star graduate of Edinburgh College of Art in 1986. While there he won the John Kinross Scholarship, from the Royal Scottish Academy, which allowed him to study in Florence, and the Richard Ford Award, from the Royal Academy in London, to study the works in the Prado, Madrid. As a student, he travelled by bicycle to see collections in places such as Amsterdam, Arnhem, Paris and London. His Degree show caused a sensation, featuring oil paintings of figures on racing bikes painted in ‘action’ mode in a technique approaching performance. He followed with images of gilded youth in fast cars and then overscale still lives and transpositions of parts of Velasquez Las Meninas before moving to Orkney and tackling the dramatic seas and coastline with the same originality and attack. Early influences included the Scottish Colourists and post-war expressionist paintings found in McLaren’s home town of Kirkcaldy's Museum.