L.S. Lowry is a much-loved British painter known for pictures that capture urban life in industrial north west England, most notably during the 1920s.

Born in 1887 in Stretford, Lancashire, Laurence Stephen Lowry later moved to Pendlebury near Manchester where he lived and worked for over 40 years. The area, which Lowry detested at first, was covered in factories and cotton mills that he soon began to obsessively depict. His fascination with the industrial landscapes and the people that inhabited them was inspired by a missed train which caused him to spend some time looking at the view of the Acme Spinning Company’s mill from the platform of Pendlebury station. He later wrote about the experience, saying that he “watched this scene – which I’d look at many times without seeing – with rapture.”



Working in a restricted palette of five colours – white, ivory black, vermilion, Prussian blue and yellow ochre – Lowry depicted landscapes, seascapes, portraits and surreal imaginings as well as industrial scenes and cityscapes. The largest collection of his artwork is held by Salford City Council and displayed at The Lowry museum. From his first solo exhibition at London’s Alex Reid & Lefevre Gallery in 1939 to more recent exhibitions at institutions such as the Tate Britain and the Royal Academy of Art, his influence, reputation and popularity continue to grow.

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