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New Ways

of Seeing:

Scottish Art Schools

Scotland has a long and distinctive tradition of visual art and Scottish painters have made a significant international contribution to the visual arts scene. It was in the nineteenth century however, that some of the most important developments took place, with the creation of Scotland’s first schools of art education.

The earliest of these, Edinburgh’s Trustees Academy was founded in 1760, though it did not assume the name of Edinburgh College of Art until 1907. Glasgow School of Art was established in 1845, Gray’s School of Art in Aberdeen shortly after in 1885 and Duncan of Jordanstone in Dundee in 1888. 

These schools gave artists the opportunity to study within Scotland in a more systematic way and they continue to nurture artistic talent. Today, Scotland is widely acknowledged for its contribution to contemporary art, not just through the vibrant art scenes in Scottish cities throughout the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries, but through the progressive influence and communities generated by these art schools. 

Many of the artists who trained in these institutions returned as teachers, inspiring the next generation of artists. And this is still the case today. Since their inception, these four great institutions have produced some of Scotland’s greatest and best loved artists. 

Perth Museum and Art Gallery's permanent collection of modern and contemporary Scottish art holds works by many of these important artists, including Joan Eardley, Anne Redpath, John Byrne, Sir Robin Philipson and Alison Watt. 

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