Sir James Guthrie (1859-1930)

Artist Name Sir James Guthrie (1859-1930)
Title Portrait of Miss Isabella H. Gardiner at the Piano
Description This stunning Scottish Victorian portrait oil painting was painted by noted Glasgow Boy artist Sir James Guthrie. The sitter is Guthrie's cousin Isabella H Gardiner. Isabella is seated at the piano, hands on the key board but looking at the artist/viewer. The painting is a scheme of cool yet not cold greys and dusky browns, flushing into the head and hands with pearly tints, with superb free brushwork and impasto. It was painted in 1899 and is described by Caw in his book on Guthrie as one of the most subtle and personal of his pictures. Of Guthrie's Whistlerian pictures, meaning based on a limited range of tones,  Miss Gardiner is the most personal and vitally expressive. The action with its accompanying expression, at once subtle and animated, creates very quietly an impression of a singularly sympathetic and intelligent personality and gives the picture its exceptional haunting appeal....It is a clear intimation of that sense of inner life, as of an aura of individuality behind personal appearance, which was to become more and more a definite if almost undefinable element in his work a few years later. (p.87) 

It is hard to imagine a higher compliment that an artist capturing the inner life of his sitter in their portrait This painting is an exceptional example of Guthrie's work and of Scottish Victorian Glasgow Boys art.
Signed and dated 1889 lower right. 
Provenance Mrs George Elmslie Troup, Edinburgh.
Fine Art Society. 
Literature:J.L. Caw, Sir James Guthrie, Macmillan, London, 1932, pl. XVI, pp. 72, 87, 129, 220
Medium Oil on Canvas
Size 40 x 57 inches
Frame Housed in a fine ornate gilt frame, 64 inches by 47 inches and in good condition.
Condition Good condition.
Biography Sir James Guthrie (10 June 1859 – 6 September 1930) was a Scottish painter, best known in his own lifetime for his portraiture, although today more generally regarded as a painter of Scottish Realism. Guthrie became one of the leading painters in the group of artists called the Glasgow Boys. His early works of rural subjects painted with broad square brush strokes show the strong influence of French painters such as Bastien-Lepage. Guthrie was born in Greenock and trained as a lawyer before turning to art. After brief but stimulating periods in London and Paris, he committed himself to painting directly from nature in Scotland. Guthrie also experimented with pastel drawings and established a reputation as a successful portrait painter. He became president of the Royal Scottish Academy in 1902 and was knighted the following year.
Elected ARSA1888, RSW 1890, RSA 1892, HROI 1903, HRSW 1903, RBA 1907, HRA 1912. Exhibited regularly RSA, RSW, GI (80), 1882-1929,  and AAS. Represented in major galleries throughout Scotland as well as abroad.
Price £30000
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