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Mons Graupius

Gillian Ayres
1979 - 1980

Mons Graupius was purchased from a touring exhibition of Gillian Ayres’ work at Rochdale in 1982. One of Britain’s foremost abstract painters, Ayres is known for her use of very heavy impasto and strong colour.

Born in 1930, she studied at Camberwell College of Art between 1945-50 and worked initially in London, later moving to Wales and then to Cornwall, where she currently lives. As well as the vibrant, heavily worked canvases for which she is best known, she is also a dedicated printmaker.

Mons Graupius (Grampian Mountain) was the site of a battle in which the Romans defeated the Scots in AD 84. Ayres often gives titles to her paintings but they are purely abstract in the sense that they represent no recognisable forms or actual spaces.