About this artwork

This work is a remarkable example of Scottish surrealism. It was painted at Hospitalfield, a country house in Angus that operated as an art college, where Pulsford was a student in the late 1930s. It shows a fellow student sitting on a table reading a book, oblivious to the two partially naked women behind him. The building is the Employment Exchange at Tollcross, Edinburgh, which Pulsford would have passed when he was a student at Edinburgh College of Art. Typical of surrealist paintings, Pulsford has included several unusual objects, including a mirror reflecting a bright blue sky dotted with white cloud, a skull, ladder and jug. There are similarities with Paul Delvaux’s surrealist work ‘Call of the Night’, which Pulsford may have seen when it was exhibited in London in 1938.

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  • title:
    Untitled (Surrealist Townscape)
  • accession number:
    GMA 5182
  • artist:
    Charles PulsfordEnglish (1912 - 1989)
  • gallery:
  • object type:
  • subject:
  • glossary:
  • materials:
    Oil on plywood
  • date created:
    1939
  • measurements:
    68.40 x 104.90 cm (framed: 71.70 x 107.70 x 5.50 cm)
  • credit line:
    Presented by the artist's family 2012
  • copyright:
    © The Estate of Charles Pulsford

Charles Pulsford

Charles Pulsford