People and Sails at Royan

Landscape usually with figures formed Fergusson's earliest painting efforts in and around his family home in Edinburgh. This painting, executed after he had settled in France, shows a much less representational use of colour in particular.

The picture is one of anumber of small scale landscape format panels which Fergusson painted of Royan. The palette is warm with pinks an doranges become mpore prominent. There is much creative interplay between the shapes of the vertical figures on the quayside and the masts and between the coloured sails and the distant buildings for example. Everything is suggested rather than defined and bold outlines are prominent.

Fergusson had travelled to Royan and nearby Saintogne on the west coast of France with felow artists S J Peploe and Anne Estelle Rice in 1909 and 1910. At the time he and Rice were romantically involved and in 1910 Peploe followed Fergusson's example by settling permanently in Paris. The Royan paintings show the strong influence of the Fauves whose work Fergusson had become acquainted with.

  • Material/Medium: oil paint on board
  • Date: 1910
  • Creator: John Duncan Fergusson (1874-1961)
  • Accession number: 1992.22
  • Category: Fine Art
  • Subject: n/a