Cornwater Fine Art Gallery - Specialist dealers to the trade and retail in original paintings and signed prints by L.S. Lowry, David Shepherd and Russell Flint.

An Isolated Figure Who Filled A Lifetime Into The Areas Of Industrial Northern England

A jar of honey was the payment Lowry was paid for the last couple of his many paintings and drawings. They were given to a colleague of many years, John Morris, for whom Lowry had previously drawn several sketches in exchange for a few bars of chocolate. The Lancashire artist's last drawings were two sketches , quickly scribbled on the rear of a bow-tie packet with a japanese felt tip pen. One is of a Salford street scene, The other is a drawing of Mr Morris's dog Labrador, Rex. It is inscribed 'To Rex, with best wishes'

Mr Morris of Heaton Road, Stockport, said "All Lowry asked for the sketches was the jar of honey, which I had brought for him anyway. He loved honey and bars of chocolate too, which I used to drop through his letter box to say Hello. It was a bit of humour between us. He drew several drawings for me, which I gave to charity, and all for a few bars of chocolate. He was very gentle, with a enormous sense of humour, but very isolated.

When Lowry died the population of the world was three and a half thousand million. The probability therefore of succeeding in worldwide recognition were very small, yet, here was a painter, whose paintings had become instantly recognisable , viewed anywhere from Manchester to Brisbane. At the age of eighty eight, Lowry passed away. Many people regard him as a genius , yet he achieved little pleasure and comfort. He was tall in stature and lived on his own, isolated, without many material possessions, and for a long time he had tended to complain about having no. He had many people coming to see him. but when he was bored with them, he would yawn. A type of yawn that was saying to his visitor; that he wished to be alone.

Lowry was amazed by the factories and the men, women and children around him, and never sawwhy they had not been captured on canvas before. So he decided to have a go. He was able to succeed at this, but it was painful on the way. During this period Lowry was selling one artwork a year for around thirty pounds. He often showed an expression of seriousness, but inside there was a strange sense of humour. He would tell budding artists, "Stop before it is too late." To others he would say, "I am unbelievablyincorrigibly lazy, maybe that is the reason I have been so industrious all my days." Or, "Look at that cemetry, nobody there is complaining." Or, "A married man exists like a dog and dies like a king; a single man lives like a king and dies like a dog." He stopped with his artistic career more often than his contemporaries begun, there are many references to 'Last Interviews'. He always thought of 1918-1930 as his finest time because he was 'fresh to it'. When a customer once said "Mr Lowry, you haven't dated this painting." He replied with a serious look, "Oh, haven't I? Which date would you prefer, 1929 was an excellent year."

On one occasion he said, "I guess if I had my life again I would be an artist, but I don't think much of it as a job. You get fed up of painting pictures, It's work like any other job."


David Tatham, fine picture dealer for more than quarter of a century, has an extensive knowledge of Lowry's biography. Signed, prints and drawings can be seen and purchased from the website. http://www.lowry.co.uk

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