Cliffs, near Solva, Pembrokeshire, Wales
fine art painting
fine art painting
fine art painting

Donald McIntyre

English ( b.1923 - d.2009 )

Cliffs, near Solva, Pembrokeshire, Wales

  • Acrylic
  • Monogram lower left

Image size 14.2 inches x 17.3 inches ( 36cm x 44cm )
Frame size 25.2 inches x 28.2 inches ( 64cm x 71.5cm )


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Available for sale from Big Sky Fine Art; this original painting by Donald McIntyre.
The work is presented and supplied in its’ original contemporary frame, mounted and behind glass.
The painting is monogrammed lower left
Previously with the Attic Gallery, Swansea.

McIntyre is one of the great British landscape and coastal artists of the twentieth century, demonstrating a strong post-impressionist style, often in his signature palette, and commanding a strong following.

Although very much thought of as a Sottish or Welsh artist McIntyre was actually born in Leeds, Yorkshire in 1923. His parents were Scottish though, and they returned there, so Donald spent his childhood in the north west of Scotland, among the mountains, the sky and the sea. It was here that, perhaps unknowingly, his sense of colour was formed. It is this palette which later distinguished him from the other artists of Wales, where he lived and painted for most of his adult life. The best of his work contains his signature colours, layers of mauve, hues of bright turquoise, flashes of burnt orange. His paintings have a light and a life about them that make them joyful, uplifting and modern.

As a young man McIntyre attended Scarborough College and Skipton Grammar School. He did not intend to earn his living as an artist and so trained to become a dentist. He was however always a natural draftsman and whilst he was training at the Glasgow Dental Hospital he was also taking evening classes at the nearby Glasgow School of Art, and he studied under James Wright RSW at Garelochhead. Having qualified as a dentist, McIntyre went on to serve in the army and later became an Educational Health Officer. In 1960 he moved to Tregarth, Bangor in north Wales, with his family, visiting remote schools as a Health Officer, and painting only in his spare time. He continued to study, and also received instruction from the Canadian Impressionist Gyrth Russell. Then, at the age of forty, he committed himself to art as his full-time occupation and his career began to take off. He worked very hard and brought to his painting the exuberant spirit of his Scottish upbringing and a sound appreciation of European art.

The late Sir Kyffin Williams RA said of McIntyre; ‘ It is easy to see why he has succeeded for the spontaneous charm of his pictures and their unworried clarity make them eminently desirable. Mentally as well as professionally Donald McIntyre is a true artist.’

Although he has painted a variety of subject McIntyre always returned to coastal scenes of the British Isles, particularly of Scotland and Wales. For many years he would travel the coast in his campervan, with his wife Lauren in support, and he would make numerous sketches ‘en plein air’, which would become the basis of paintings to be completed back in his studio at home. He spent many summers painting on the island of Iona, where the light and colours perfectly suited his palette and style.

Donald McIntyre died on January 2009 after a period of ill health, during which he remained devoted to his painting.

McIntyre was a member of the Royal Academy, the Royal Scottish Academy, Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolour, the Royal Cambrian Academy, the Royal Society of Marine Artists and the Pastel Society.

His work has been exhibited at the leading London galleries, including the Royal Academy, the Royal Scottish Academy, the Royal Cambrian Academy and the Royal National Eisteddfod. He exhibited at the Attic Gallery in Swansea for many years, where the proprietors were loyal patrons.

Today he has a reputation as an upholder of the Scottish Colourist tradition which has made his work collectable well beyond Wales, or indeed Scotland. His work is represented in several public collections, including the National Library of Wales, the Welsh Contemporary Art Society, the Welsh Arts Council, the University of St. Andrews, Atkinson Art Gallery, Southport, Newport Art Gallery and the collection of Birkenhead Art Gallery. His works are also part of many distinguished private collections including that of HRH the Duke of Edinburgh.

This painting depicts the cliffs of Solva, a village on the coast of Pembrokeshire in West Wales, as they face the swirling ocean. The cliffs are dark brown and purple, topped with gold, and the waters below are a vibrant mauve, and aquamarine, with white crests of surf as they crash onto the jagged rocks. This is an excellent example of the desirable McIntyre palette.