William Wilson OBE RSA RSW, 1905-1972
Born in Edinburgh, Wilson started work with the map makers John Bartholomew & Son, and at the same time attended evening classes at Edinburgh College of Art. Adam Bruce Thomson, who was responsible for the college’s etching classes, recognised Wilson’s talent, and as a result he was enabled to attend full-time classes. In 1934 Wilson studied engraving and stained glass, opening his own stained-glass studio in Edinburgh three years later.
Wilson also excelled in printmaking and watercolour. He was superlative draughtsman whose etchings are reminiscent of Bruegel, and this draughtsmanship can be seen also in his watercolours. These works, which are based on a framework of pen-and-ink drawing, record scenes ranging from the fishing ports of Fife to Provence and Venice.