Portrait with Earrings

The sitter for this portrait was Martha Arnott, one of Morris's dance pupils following her return to Glasgow on the outbreak of World War II. Although Fergusson also met her at this time he did not paint her until the 1950s. One of her lasting impressions was his insistence that he did not paint likenesses.

Fergusson aimed to convey his emotional response to the sitter and he emphasised this point in his book 'Modern Scottish Painting', of 1943. 'Drawing is a matter of expressing form as you feel it...its this human impression or feeling about people and things that the artist does get and express...'.

On his death in 1961 Fergusson left the largest collection of his works in existence to his partner, Margaret Morris (1891-1980). In 1963 she established the JD Fergusson Art Foundation, who subsequently gifted the entire collection, archive and copyright to Perth and Kinross District Council in November 1991.

  • Material/Medium: oil paint on canvas
  • Date: 1952
  • Creator: John Duncan Fergusson (1874-1961)
  • Accession number: 1992.295
  • Category: Fine Art
  • Subject: n/a