Wilhelmina Barns-Graham | A Journey Through Four Decades
A catalogue to accompany the exhibition A Journey Through Four Decades, November 2019
The Scottish Gallery is happy to be defined by its lifelong association with the work and life of Wilhelmina Barns-Graham (1912–2004). A dedicated artist; an innovator in times of change (and chaos); a woman artist finally triumphant in a predominantly masculine world; an artist happy to be a Scotswoman but whose work transcends boundaries, real or imagined. In seeking the significant in a long professional life she discovered the emotional, what Mark Rothko pinned down as his only interest in making art, “to express basic human emotions: tragedy, ecstasy, doom, and so on.”
The astonishing late flowering of Willie as a colourist springs from this emotionalism, but was delivered, as always, with the acuity and judgement she had garnered over a lifetime.
We are delighted to offer this latest selection of her work from four decades and give thanks to Kate Downie, Dr. Isobel MacDonald and Geoffrey Bertram for their contributions to this catalogue.