When Dorothy Johnstone painted this portrait in 1925, both she and the sitter, Belle Kilgour, were closely connected with Edinburgh College of Art. Dorothy, a former student, had been appointed to the teaching staff as soon as she graduated but had to give up her post after her marriage to another member of staff, D. M. Sutherland. Belle was still a student; she had her first picture accepted at the Royal Scottish Academy (RSA) this very year and later exhibited paintings and a sculpture there between 1933 and 1944. 'Girl with Fruit' itself was exhibited at the RSA in 1925. The rich and sensuous handling of paint is typical not only of Johnstone’s work but of much Edinburgh art in the twentieth century, while the bright acidic colours are those favoured by many Art Deco designers in the 1920s and 1930s.
Where to see this painting?
The Fleming Collection
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