Anticipation builds for 'Into Spring' exhibition by acclaimed Scots artist Ron Lawson

·4-min read
Ron has been painting for over 40 years but went full time in 2010 by leaving his former job in the art and design team at publishers DC Thomson <i>(Image: Ron Lawson)</i>
Ron has been painting for over 40 years but went full time in 2010 by leaving his former job in the art and design team at publishers DC Thomson (Image: Ron Lawson)

HE is one of the most sought after artists working in Scotland today but despite the demand, Ron Lawson concentrates on quality rather than quantity.

This is why he elects to have only two gallery exhibitions a year - one in Glasgow and one in Crieff.

His exhibitions are always phenomenally successful, selling quickly, and his collectors are eagerly awaiting the new show, “Into Spring”, which is being staged at the Annan Gallery in Glasgow from April 1 – April 23.


’Hebridean Blackhouse, Blue Door’


Like his other work, it centres on the Hebrides where Ron spends weeks at a time capturing the special atmosphere of the islands.

The evocative results have won him fans around the world with sales as far afield as the USA, Australia and Singapore.

“Ron has a very unique and recognisable style and he’s painting the Scottish landscape in a way no one else does, which has deservedly won him admirers worldwide,” said Scott Bennett who, along with his wife Susan, owns the Annan Gallery and the Strathearn Gallery in Crieff where they stage Lawson’s autumn shows.


‘Red Roof on the Coast’


“Ron also has a very successful print range which is how many people first come across his work but nothing compares to an original painting, so this exhibition is a fantastic opportunity for those in or visiting Glasgow to enjoy Ron’s paintings.”

Scott added: “Both our galleries work with and show the very best Scottish contemporary artists and the fact that we are the only galleries Ron exhibits with is a huge privilege for us.”

Whereas the majority of artists today will work with oil or acrylic paint, Ron has only ever  worked with watercolour, constantly experimenting with the effects it can produce and using a limited colour palette to invoke the feelings of standing on a Scottish island, experiencing the sensation of being there on your own.


Ron at work in his studio


“There’s sometimes a preconception that watercolour painting always has a more delicate and lighter feel to it, whereas Ron is using watercolour to produce exceptionally bold and striking paintings,” said Scott.

“He is able to paint in a way and produce effects such as his signature flat grey skies that you just can’t do with other types of paint and the result is something quite mesmeric when you’re standing in front of the painting.”

Ron’s appeal to art buyers across the world is helping strengthen the reputation of Scottish art, according to Scott.

“Artists like Ron are only a good thing for Scottish art,” he said. “Scottish landscape painting has always traditionally been strong with many talented artists out there and it’s fantastic Ron has that appeal and we have clients abroad that know and are buying Ron’s work.”

Ron has been painting for over 40 years but went full time in 2010 by leaving his former job in the art and design team at publishers DC Thomson.


'Puffin Pair'


However, while he’s proud to get the chance to showcase the best of Scotland’s landscapes and island life to an international audience, he tries not to let that influence his work.

“It’s actually quite thrilling to think there are so many people around the world buying them and you wouldn’t necessarily think something so Scottish would appeal but my paintings are collected worldwide, in places like Singapore, Hong Kong, Australia and America,” he said.

“When I paint a location on South Uist for example, I try to get the vibe and the feel of the place in the painting. It’s remote and in parts splendidly isolated and I’m always trying to capture that.

“I never think ‘What can I do differently for people in Hong Kong or America?’, I’m painting the experience of being in a place and I am absolutely thrilled when I hear about sales to somewhere unusual abroad and I am delighted that so many people around the world like them.”


'Ferguson tractor on the Machair'


Ron added: “I’ve been really lucky that after I left working full time, every show since 2011 has been a tremendous success but as each one approaches you never take anything for granted and I just hope the body of work I have produced gets a good reaction.

“The most important thing is to put that little slice of Scotland on paper for all to enjoy, and that’s exactly what is behind it.

“It’s strange to think that after all these years of painting the Hebrides you can still find something new to inspire you - but the reality is it’s endless, it really is.”

  •  Ron Lawson ‘Into Spring’ Solo Exhibition opens at the Annan Gallery, Glasgow at 10am on April 1st, and runs to April 23rd.

    To view the exhibition images, click here to visit the gallery website:

    Annan Gallery, 164 Woodlands Road, Glasgow, G3 6LL,
    phone: 0141 332 0028