‘A Country Road’
Oil on canvas
61cm x 84cm
24″ x 33″

Click image to enlarge



Studio Inventory no. EE255
Anthony Rampton Esq
With Aitken Dott & Son, Edinburgh
Mr and Mrs Kenneth France, Glasgow
Thence by descent


Edinburgh, The Scottish Arts Council, n.d.,
Aberdeen, Aberdeen Art Gallery Museum, Joan Eardley’s Catterline, 1975, (lent E.H France).
Joan Eardley first visited Catterline, near Stonehaven, in 1954. The large, summery canvas would have been painted on the spot and the pigment has been applied vigorously, and expressively, by brush and other means, with highlights of pure colour.

Eardley was a British painter, born in England but considered Scottish (her mother was Scottish and she lived in Scotland from 1940). One of her teachers was James Cowie; he perhaps helped to shape her preference for subjects drawn from everyday experience, but her approach was more earthy and sensuous than his. She divided her time between Glasgow (where she painted kitchen sink subjects) and the fishing village of Catterline, about 30 km (20 miles) south of Aberdeen on the north-east coast.

Her favourite subjects in her later years were the village and the sea, especially in stormy weather (she is said to have set off from her Glasgow home as soon as she heard reports of gales) and children from Glasgow’s tenement blocks. The freely painted landscapes, often bleak and desolate are among the most powerful and individual works in 20th-century British art. After her early death from breast cancer her ashes were scattered on the beach at Catterline. Her work is well represented in the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh.