This simple town scene by L. S. Lowry is a lithograph from 1964 called Tree In A Square and is rendered exclusively in black and white, in the artist’s direct and distinct drawing style. The scene shows a square of a town, with a tree in the centre of the composition and people wandering throughout the foreground space.
Initially trained under the Impressionist master, Adolphe Valette, Lowry was interested in recording the nuances of everyday life and would sketch during the day to record his observations of the world around him. Tree In A Square is one such study, maintaining a sketchy quality as though executed quickly from life. During his prolific career, the artist produced over 8,000 drawings.
This print is exemplary of Lowry’s direct and distinctive style that led art critic Jonathan Jones to name the artist as a ‘modern primitive’. The scene is shown from an elevated view so as to give a holistic impression of the town and show the bustle of the crowds. Perfectly in line with Lowry’s stylised realism that he is so famed for, in this print the figures appear almost like silhouettes, dotted across the scene.