L.S. Lowry collectibles

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2015-06-26 10:38:01

Laurence Stephen Lowry (1 November 1887 – 23 February 1976) was an English artists renowned for his paintings of Lancashire towns. His work brought to life the industrial urban landscapes of the North of England, some populated with crowds of matchstick-like figures pouring out of factories or into football stadiums, but other empty and desolate such as his images of bombed buildings during the Second World War.

A former Manchester Academy art student and rent collector for the Pall Mall Property Company, Lowry was annoyed by some accusations that he was an amateur ‘Sunday painter’, and once stated:

"If people call me a Sunday painter I'm a Sunday painter who paints every day of the week!"

In 1968 Lowry's painting ‘Coming Out of School’ was reproduced on the highest-denomination stamp in the series issued by the Post Office depicting great British artists.

He died in 1976 at the age of 88, just a few months before a retrospective exhibition of his work at the Royal Academy broke all attendance records for a 20th century artist. Today he is remembered as one of Britain’s most popular modern artists, and his work is celebrated in Salford’s Lowry arts centre which opened in 2000.

Notable work and sales

A record price for Lowry’s work was set in 2007, when his painting ‘Good Friday, Daisy Nook’ painted in 1946 sold at a Christie’s auction for £3,772,000. The previous record for his work had been set in 1999, when his depiction of Bolton Wanderers fans streaming into their stadium entitled ‘Going to the Match’ was purchased by the Professional Footballer’s Association (PFA) for £1.9 million.

The current record price for his work is jointly held by two paintings - The Football Match (1949) and Piccadilly Circus, London (1960) - both of which sold for £5,641,250 at Christie's in 2011.

Other notable works include ‘Coming Out of School’ (1927), which was the first of his paintings to be bought by the Tate Gallery, and ‘A Street Scene’ (1928), the first to be purchased by the Salford City Art Gallery (later to become the Lowry).

Other famous works include ‘Coming from the Mill’ (1917), ‘An Accident’ (1926) and ‘The Football Match’ (1949).

See main article: Top 10 L.S Lowry paintings sold at auction

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