Snowdrops in Kirkton Graveyard

119 x 178 cm
Sarah Longley ARUA

Charcoal on paper


A large scale masterwork in charcoal inspired by the landscape near the artist’s home in the Western Highlands of Scotland.

“I just loved drawing these little snowdrops, trying to get a sense of the delicacy of them – these powerful little flowers that come up when it’s still very cold at the end of winter, the first spring flowers. They’re referred to (I think it comes from the French) as frost-piercers. They’re hardy little things, despite their delicacy, so I was trying to portray that. And their abundance is amazing!

“The white of the paper is what I’m using, to create that brilliant whiteness. One of the advantages of working in black and white is the white of the paper can be so radiant. So, I was working on the spaces between, the ‘negative space.’

“What I find is, the graveyard is very comforting, thinking about the great cycle of life, which seems so poignant when the snowdrops come up in between the gravestones. They’re there so hopeful, and herald a new life, which is on its way to Spring.” -Sarah Longley

Read more about this work, in the artist’s own words, in ‘Sarah Longley: Six Large Works’ – click on the pamphlet photo in the Artworks tab to order your copy of this collector’s edition.