I began drawing as soon as I could hold a pencil between my fingers. Still in short trousers, I won a gold medal in the Glasgow Schools’ Art Competition at the Kelvingrove Art Gallery. and began training at Glasgow School of Art. This was cut short when I was called up for National Service in the RAF in Germany. When I returned to Glasgow, I entered the Glasgow College of Drama and trained as an actor, which I was for many years. It was during my time in New Zealand I resumed art training with Anneke Laan, an art teacher from Amsterdam, and have been painting professionally since. In Auckland, I won two Art Awards, had a solo exhibition at the Lake House, Takapuna, and was also shown at the Morgan Street Gallery, Newmarket.
On my return to Glasgow, my paintings have been hung at the ARTeries Gallery, the Glasgow Art Club, and the Penalty Spot in Glasgow, the Henderson Gallery in Edinburgh, Rozelle House in Ayr, the Cockburn Gallery in Maybole and Scotland Artists in Bothwell.
The Robert Burns Birthplace Museum displayed ‘The Nine Lives of Burns’, the nine canvasses portraying key moments in the poet’s life. My recent religious series, fifteen paintings entitled ‘A Glasgow Calvary’, locating The Stations of the Cross in Glasgow, and seven canvasses depicting Our Lady’s life, ‘The Marian Way’, were exhibited at St Peter’s Church in Anderston, Glasgow. ‘A Glasgow Calvary’ also showed during the Scarecrow Festival in Bothwell. It is on exhibition at the University of Glasgow Memorial Chapel April 2019. My thanks go to Matthew and Margaret Reilly for their generous patronage of these three projects.
My latest work, showing at the Glasgow Art Club through April 2019 and at Queen’s Cross Church, Glasgow, in June and July 2019, is ‘The Mackintosh Series’, seven stories of Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s artistic journey.
For more details: www.johncairney.com/painting