Robert Colquhoun & Robert MacBryde

Sword Dancer (Costume Design for 'Donald of the Burthens')

About this artwork

In 1948, Colquhoun and his partner, MacBryde, were selected to design the sets and costumes for Léonide Massine’s new ballet, ‘Donald of the Burthens’. Based on an ancient Scots tale, the ballet tells the story of a woodcutter who, tired of his profession, makes a pact with Death. Colquhoun and MacBryde made over 250 collaborative designs for the ballet, using a carbon transfer technique. By inking up paper sheets and drawing on the backs, the artists could transfer a design as many times as they liked – allowing them to test a number of different colour combinations. It is thought that Colquhoun did the majority of the drawing in these designs whilst MacBryde did the colouring.

Updated before 2020

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Robert Colquhoun

Robert Colquhoun