John Duncan Fergusson

Scottish (1874 - 1961)
John Duncan Fergusson Dieppe, 14 July 1905 : Night 1905 © The Fergusson Gallery, Perth & Kinross Council, Scotland

Biography

Born 1874
Died 1961
Nationality Scottish

‘Scottish Colourist’ John Duncan Fergusson is recognised as one of the most influential Scottish painters of the 20th century. Mostly self-taught, he moved to Paris in 1907, where he became a member of the Parisian art circles to which artists such as Matisse and Picasso also belonged. The outbreak of the First World War forced him to return to Britain, and by 1918 he was an established member of the art scene in Chelsea, London. In 1929 he went back to Paris for a further eleven years before moving to Glasgow, where he lived until his death. Like his friend S J Peploe, Fergusson’s early work was influenced by that of Whistler and the Glasgow Boys, but in France he came across Fauvism and adopted a similar style, using pure, bright colours and bold, rhythmic contours.

Glossary terms

  • A group of Scottish painters comprising S.J. Peploe, F.C.B. Cadell, Leslie Hunter and J.D. Fergusson who were active in the early twentieth century. They all spent time in France and were influenced by French artists’ bold use of colour and free brushwork.