William York Macgregor

Scottish (1855 - 1923)
William York Macgregor The Vegetable Stall 1884

Biography

Born 1855
Died 1923
Nationality Scottish
Birth place Finnart
Death place Bridge of Allan

Macgregor was one of the leading artists in the group known as the Glasgow Boys, painting landscapes and contemporary scenes in a fresh, direct way, influenced by developments in French painting. With his school friend, James Paterson, a fellow Glasgow Boy, he often painted during summer expeditions out of the city. After studying at Glasgow School of Art and in a local artist's studio, Macgregor attended the Slade School in London under Alphonse Legros. On his return to Glasgow he ran a life class in his studio, which became the regular meeting place for the Glasgow Boys.

Glossary terms

  • The Glasgow Boys were a loose group of young artists that represented the beginnings of modernism in Scottish painting. In the early 1880s, 'the boys’ were united by their disillusionment with traditional academic painting, with its strong focus on historical subjects and high levels of finish. Instead, they painted contemporary rural subjects, often working out of doors and painting directly onto the canvas.

  • A painting, drawing or photograph depicting inanimate, everyday objects. Although the genre has been in existence since ancient times, it was popularised in Holland after the Renaissance in the sixteenth century and has continued to be explored in contemporary times.