Sir William Gillies

The Harbour (About 1934 - 1937)

About this artwork

This work depicts the harbour at Anstruther, on the Fife coast. Gillies saw an exhibition of Paul Klee's work in Edinburgh in 1934 and this work seems to reflect the childlike characteristics of Klee's art, as well as his practice of dividing the space into a flat, grid-like composition. Gillies has used contrasting blocks of colour to emphasise the horizontal and vertical lines of the buildings. The ships in the harbour merge with the houses to form a surface pattern, with the masts of the ships forming the verticals that balance the rippled horizontal brushstrokes.