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Another picture tells a story in museum archive

Curator Samantha Bannerman with the Winifred McKenzie painting aquired by the St Andrews Preservation Trust Museum. August 2014.

Curator Samantha Bannerman with the Winifred McKenzie painting aquired by the St Andrews Preservation Trust Museum. August 2014.

Another painting has been added to a museum’s collection of works by 20th century local artists.

St Andrews Preservation Trust Museum is delighted to have been successful at auction for a still life painting by the late Winifred McKenzie.

The still life of red and blue poppies came under the hammer at Edinburgh auction house Lyon and Turnbull last month.

Winifred McKenzie (1905 -2001) arrived in St Andrews with her sister Alison in 1941. Both were accomplished and renowned artists, exhibiting their work in galleries in London and at the Royal Scottish Academy.

Throughout the World War Two, the sisters held art classes for Polish soldiers billeted in St Andrews.

The works produced by the soldiers are held in the museum’s art collection, and were displayed in 2013 during the temporary exhibition “The St Andrews School”.

Museum curator Samantha Bannerman sought support from the National Fund for Acquisitions, a fund established to helps museums, galleries, libraries and archives throughout Scotland make acquisitions for their collections.

The North Street museum holds a number of works by 20th century local artists, and an archive of material relating to the McKenzie sisters.

However, it did not have a painting by Winifred in its collection.

Discussing the latest acquisition, Samantha said: “From the McKenzie archive, we were able to find out that this painting was originally sold for £50 at the St Andrews Art Club in 1977.

“Winifred’s paintings are quite difficult to come by, and so I felt quite strongly that we should aim to acquire this painting in order to have an example of her work in our collection.

”Through pulling some of our own funds together, coupled with support from the National Fund for Acquisitions, we succeeded in purchasing the painting for £598.

“Now, nearly 40 years later, the painting has returned to St Andrews and will be displayed next spring during our Easter exhibition of recent acquisitions.”

“The museum sector, for some time, has been, and still is, struggling from budget cuts, so it is encouraging that we, as an independent museum, are in a position to develop our collection for the enjoyment and education of future generations.”

 

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