Sir James Guthrie HRA PRSA HRSW 1859-1930


Sir James Guthrie was one of the Glasgow Boys. Born at Greenock, he turned to painting after studying law at Glasgow University. In the early 1880s he lived and worked at Cockburnspath with others of the group, including Walton and Crawhall, painting the local landscape and people.


John Lavery claimed that seeing Guthrie’s painting persuaded him to stay on in Glasgow rather than return to France, such was the advanced state of modern Scottish art. Guthrie’s drive and talent established him as the leader of the group of like-minded artists. He left his studies in law at Glasgow in 1877 to pursue a career in art; he was largely self-taught. The tonal palette and unsentimental vision of Bastien-Lepage’s painting was of enormous importance to Guthrie in particular. His square brush technique and puttylike textures were adopted more enthusiastically by Guthrie than anyone else in the group. As such, the quotidian became the subject of scrutiny. Filtered through the lens of French innovations, he caught the mood of the time, and his early success convinced others that the imperial city of Glasgow was the place to be. 



We are actively seeking consignments of work by James Guthrie. Please contact us with details or to enquire after available works by this artist.