Bute artist’s painting could fetch £20,000 at auction

George Leslie Hunter's 'In The Garden, St Monans'.
George Leslie Hunter's 'In The Garden, St Monans'.

A painting by a renowned Scottish artist who was born in Rothesay could fetch up to £20,000 in an Edinburgh art sale next month.

In the Garden, St Monans, by George Leslie Hunter, is part of Bonhams’ winter sale of Scottish art on December 3.

Born on Bute in 1877, Hunter - part of the group of artists known as the Scottish Colourists - spent much of his childhood and early adulthood in California, where he set out on a career as a graphic artist, before being inspired to take up oil painting after a visit to Paris.

The painting in next month’s sale was created while Hunter was living and working in Fife between 1924 and 1927.

Bonhams’ head of Scottish art, Chris Brickley, said: “Hunter had a very different background to the other Colourists. Although they were all influenced by the energy and dynamism of the pre- and post-First World War French artistic movements, Hunter’s In the Garden, St Monans and many of his other works from the Fife years clearly reflects the impact of Matisse and the Fauves.

“It is perhaps no coincidence that the colourful and vibrant paintings he produced during this time were his most commercially successful.”

The Scottish Colourists - Hunter, Samuel Peploe, Francis Cadell and John Duncan Fergusson - combined Scottish painting traditions with the work of French impressionists such as Monet, Matisse and Cézanne.

Their work fell out of favour by the Second World War, but the style has played an influential role in the development of Scottish art since it was rediscovered in the 1980s.