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Record Image
McTaggart, William (British, b.1835, d.1910), Artist
Windy Landscape
Circa 1890s
oil on canvas
935 x 840 mm sight size
Collection of the Dunedin Public Art Gallery. Purchased 1952 with funds from the Dunedin Public Art Gallery Society.
This view, over cornfields and woodland, towards the blue, distant Moorfoot Hills, was painted in the 1890s at the artist’s home at Broomieknowe, some 7 miles south of the centre of Edinburgh. William McTaggart, a Scottish artist and a Gaelic speaker from the remote western peninsula of Kintyre, moved to Broomieknowe in 1889 with his second wife and a large family. He remained there until his death 21 years later.
The children in the foreground are almost certainly the artist’s own but they are barely individualised, merging with the field in which they play. McTaggart was Scotland’s leading landscape painter. He has been hailed as Scotland’s Impressionist and the spontaneity of his paintings has similarities to the work of his French contemporaries. A more likely inspiration, however, was the work of the great English landscape painter of an earlier generation, John Constable. McTaggart would have seen several of Constable’s large oil sketches on exhibition in Edinburgh in the 1880s. Their freedom of handling and acute depiction of the ever-changing British weather are reflected in this happy painting of carefree children and summer skies.

not on view

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