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The Art Student

The Art Student

While at Belfast School of Art, William Scott met his close friend William Tocher. The two friends painted the same view of a farmhouse in Augher on display in this exhibition.

In 1931, William Scott and William Tocher finished their studies in Belfast and gained free admission into the Sculpture School at the Royal Academy of Arts in London. William Scott’s first impression of the School was not particularly complimentary: ‘An atmosphere of antiquity, dusty plaster casts of Greek sculpture and the dead hand of time permeated the Studios, nothing had changed since Turner, Constable and others had been students nearly 200 years before us.’*

As an art student, life in 1930s London was a financial struggle. It was difficult for William Scott to make the journey back to Enniskillen to visit his family:
‘I was absolutely broke. There was no help to be got from anywhere…I got terribly fed up, then I did cleaning jobs, making beds for blokes who were business men. And I couldn’t go back to Ireland because I had no money, that’s all.’*

*‘William Scott: Catalogue Raisonné of Oil Paintings’ (Volume 1), edited by Sarah Whitfield, published in 2013 by Thames & Hudson in association with the William Scott Foundation

Sketching Outdoors 4

William Scott as an art student in Belfast, dated
between 1928-­1931
Courtesy of William Scott Foundation

Masaccio 4

Postcard of Masaccio’s Expulsion from the
Garden of Eden, cut down by Scott
William Scott Archive

 Belfast College 4

Photograph dating from William Scott's time
at the Belfast School of Art, dated
between 1928-­1931
Courtesy of William Scott Foundation

 Piero 4

Reproduction of Piero della Francesca’s
The Baptism of Christ, squared up by William Scott
Courtesy of William Scott Foundation

Augher Farmhouse 4

William Scott
Farmhouse, Augher, County Tyrone, 1931
Watercolour on paper
24 × 33 cm / 9½ × 13 in
Private collection
© William Scott Foundation 2016

 Student Images 4

Sheet of photographs showing three sculptures and three paintings
made by Scott during his years at the Royal Academy Schools
Courtesy of William Scott Foundation

 Tocher Painting 4

William Tocher
Farmhouse, Augher, County Tyrone, 1931
Watercolour on paper
24 × 33 cm / 9½ × 13 in
Private collection

Buildings And Tree 4

William Scott
[Buildings and Tree], 1932
Oil on board
67.3 × 52.1 cm / 26½ × 20½ in
Private collection
© William Scott Foundation 2016