The Life of Salford’s Favorite Son

Laurence Stephen Lowry was born in Rusholme, Manchester, in November 1887, the only little one of Irish-born R S Lowry and Elizabeth Lowry (born Hobson). He attended a local school in Victoria Park, but took private classes from William Fitz, before starting work as a clerk for a firm of chartered accountants in 1904.

From 1905-1915 he attended drawing and painting courses at the Municipal College of Art (later Manchester College of Artwork, and now a part of Manchester Metropolitan University), where he was tutored by Adolphe Valette.

Lowry moved to Pendlebury in Salford together with his parents in 1909, where he was to dwell for almost 40 years. During this time he attended art courses at Salford Faculty of Artwork, developing an curiosity in the city and industrial landscape.

He exhibited with the Manchester Academy of Fine Arts from 1919, in addition to entering paintings in the Paris Salon. By the early 1930s he was exhibiting at the Royal Academy in London. He was awarded an honorary MA at Manchester University in 1945, and Doctor of Letters in 1961, elected to the Royal Academy in 1962, and given freedom of the City of Salford in 1965. He lived in Mottram till he died in 1976 – a death marked by unprecedented homage by the ‘ordinary people’ of Manchester.

L.S. Lowry is definitely one of the vital celebrated British artists and his distinctive contribution to recording the interval, culture and panorama of commercial Salford and Manchester is without parallel. His work is a most distinctive and comprehensive report of the pre and post World War Two northern industrial town.

Many individuals associate Lowry with "matchstick people", however he is recognized to have produced over 10,000 works, starting from completed oil work to hastily drawn sketches. The native industrial scene was his most frequent subject but he additionally painted seascapes and portraits. He was an amazing humorist and had intense perception into human nature, characterising it without sentiment.

Later in his life he focused on producing work of figures both singly or in groups, invariably against a white background. He also produced thousand of pencil drawings throughout his lifetime, these are actually very collectable and the most effective ones are extremely detailed.

Lowry died without a registered physician, leading the galleries a merry dance. Hoping to inherit a couple of paintings in his will, they visited him in his old age solely to seek out he had left all of them to a girl, additionally referred to as Lowry, who had written him a letter years before, asking how she may develop into an artist.

Lowry’s standing as one of many main British artists of the 20th Century was reinforced when the painting "Going To The Match" was sold for an enormous £1.9 million to the Manchester-based Professional Footballers Association. Manchester’s premier museum, The Lowry Centre in Salford Quays, now shows a major assortment of his work.

His paintings are now one of the most sought after of modern British artists and command prices of millions of pounds in today’s market for a major work of art.

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