Opposite him was spinning-mill, brooding powerfully over the rows of little houses.Suddenly, he says, it came over him that he was going to paint the industrial scene. It took him a few years to develop his technique, but by 1920 or so he was fully armed.The extensive collection of press-cuttings and other news articles below has been personally collected by myself and my family over many years.Currently, there are 68 articles featured and more will be added in due course.The reason for this is probably that the selection committee under the chairmanship of Sir William Orpen, is composed of eminent artists representing the right, centre and left of contemporary artistic opinion, thus assuring sympathetic as well as critical consideration of every kind of effort.We are told that 1,400 works in all were submitted, and the nature and kind of the 345 that remain show the judging was as broad as it was careful.But on examination a character comes out which speaks well for the system of selection and promises well for the future of the scheme, and that is a uniform level of competence in a wide variety of styles.There are not more than half a dozen works in the 345 which excite wonder as to why they were admitted, and it would not be easy to think of a recent London exhibition with the same effect of consistency.
He is tall, spare man, with a slight stoop, thought he does not look his age.There he lives, alone, a bachelor, in a small stone house, with fourteen clocks for company.His front room, strawberry-distempered and full of elderly furniture, is his sitting-room; his back room is his studio.The majority of the artists represented are of a familiar kind; sound rather than brilliant, knowing their business but just lacking the qualities - whether of novelty or intensity - which attract notice in a mixed exhibition from the casual visitor. at sixty-seven seems belated, the Academy can still be praised for electing him at all.A considerable number of the works are actually works which have been noted approvingly by the critics on their appearance in London, and to have given them this second change with a wider public, and a public less spoiled by opportunity than the London public, is a great thing done. Lowry, made by a critic, was provocative - designed to start an argument rather to finish one - but it was to the point. No one who has seen his paintings can easily forget them.
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He has done for industrial Lancashire what Constable did for Essex. Lowry is not, as many people think, a painter of ugliness; he is a painter of an unusual kind of beauty that it takes time to appreciate. The Lowry scene - sometimes real but generally imagined - is a Lancashire town.