John ‘Jack’ Knox (1936 – 2015)

Jack Knox was brought up in Kirkintilloch in Scotland, by a family of tailors, and studied at the Glasgow School of Art between 1953 and 1957. He spent time in Europe, going first to Paris, to attend the atelier of Cubist artist André L’Hôte, then soaking up Surrealism, Tachisme, Colour Field and Pop Art movements elsewhere. In particular he took to Analytic Cubism and the work of Georges Braque, who developed the style of broken surface perspectives with Picasso.

Knox went on to participate in exhibitions in Chicago, Warsaw, Brussels, New York, Düsseldorf, Vienna, San Paolo and Sarajevo. In 1966 he had his first major solo exhibition at Aitken Dott’s gallery in Edinburgh. In 1981 he moved back to the west coast and was appointed head of drawing and painting at Glasgow School of Art. He taught there until he retired in 1992. Knox’s oeuvre however, is extremely distinctive, and attached to no movement in particular. He has been said to have made everything that he learned local, making him a true tenant of Scottish art. His work was marked by an un-modern return to academic tradition, his work is closely observed and well painted. He also showed a fondness for artistic in house jokes. Briefly in the late 1980s, this style won international acclaim driven by Stephen Conroy a student of Knox and Jack Vettriano. In 2004 he set up a studio at home in Broughty Ferry, near Dundee, with his wife Margaret, where he continued to work until his death in 2015. His work is in most of the major Scottish collections.