Another Scottish woman artist in the Leyden Gallery collection is Dame Elizabeth Blackadder, born in Falkirk, Scotland in 1931, Blackadder is perhaps most well-known for her lyrical watercolour paintings and printmaking of botanical flowers and cats. She was also notably the first woman to be elected a member of both the Royal Scottish Academy and the Royal Academy. Blackadder studied at Edinburgh College of Art under the tutelage of Sir William Gillies and lectured at the college from 1962 until her retirement in 1986.
According to the Scottish art historian Duncan Macmillan, Blackadder’s floral paintings are ‘based on a description that is so fastidious it becomes poetic”. As a child, she loved to collect flowers and plants, meticulously labelling then with their Latin names and classifying different forms of them. Her interest in nature would reappear consistently in her art. Blackadder’s artistic approach to her flower paintings is highly scientific, precise, analytical and objective, albeit the overall outcome appears to be lyrical, soft, and with a delicate touch. In her still life paintings and drawings, she considers space between objects carefully and often creates the composition in a ‘tabletop’ style, depicting oriental objects she has collected from her frequent visits to Japan. The influence of Japanese zen culture on Blackadder’s art can be seen in the way she arranges the negative space.
Leyden Gallery is delighted to present both prints and original watercolour paintings by Elizabeth Blackadder. Please forward any enquiries to us at email@example.com