'Best loved of Scottish artists' scores $194,563 World Record price


One of the finest paintings by Robert Gemmell Hutchison, possibly the best loved of Scottish artists, set a new world record for the artist at Bonhams Annual Scottish Sale in Edinburgh on Wednesday August 31 when it was sold for £120,000 ($194,563).

'Sea Gulls and Sapphire Seas' was painted in 1909 and represents the artist at the height of his powers. 

In a dazzling display of impressionistic technique, Hutchison places a characteristic foreground of children in the sand dunes against the sparkling sea and whirling gulls. 

Robert Gemmell Hutchison's 'Sea Gulls and Sapphire Seas' 

Many of his most popular paintings feature children playing beside the sea and he often used his daughters and their friends as models in coastal locations in Berwickshire, East Lothian and Carnoustie.

A prolific painter all his life, Gemmell Hutchison exhibited tirelessly and successfully but never allied himself to a particular school of Scottish painting such as the Colourists or the Glasgow Boys.

The Head of Pictures at Bonhams, Scotland, Chris Brickley said, "This is a major, and very beautiful, Gemmell Hutchison painting and I am not surprised that it was much sought after and that it sold for such a large sum."

Other highlights in the sale included John Fergusson's 'At the Milliner's Paris' which was sold for £222,000.

John Fergusson's 'At the Milliner's Paris'

In all, seven of Fergusson's paintings made over £100,000 each.

Edinburgh born Fergusson was the most travelled of the four Scottish Colourists (the other three being Peploe, Cadell and Hunter).

Largely self taught, he trained for a while as a naval surgeon before turning to painting, his work reflects a wide range of influences from Manet and Monet to Matisse and Whistler.

You can read our full report on the sale's other highlights here.


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