Japanese Still Life with Fan

In Fergusson's early work he shows an awareness and debt to the work of James McNeill Whistler (1834-1903) whom he referred to as, 'A man with a real sense of design, a real sense of colour and quality of paint'. (JD Fergusson, 'Modern Scottish Painting', 1943, p49)

The introduction of Japanese objects provides a clear link to Whistler, whose work helped to popularise the incorporation of oriental motifs. It also reflects wider trends in painting at the turn of the century. The introduction of bright colour accents meanwhile hints at Fergusson's future artistic direction.

Fergusson may well have hoped to sell this decorative still life which would have been well suited to a domestic setting.

  • Material/Medium: oil paint on canvas
  • Date: 1903
  • Creator: John Duncan Fergusson (1874-1961)
  • Accession number: 1992.13
  • Category: Fine Art
  • Subject: n/a