English artist Laurence Stephen Lowry is best-known for his drawings and paintings of the industrial landscape of North England, specifically Pendlebury, Lancashire, where he lived and worked as a rent collector for more than 40 years, and Salford near Manchester, where The Lowry art gallery is now based. He studied at the Manchester School of Art and the Royal Technical Institute, Salford.
Lowry developed a distinctive style over the course of his career. Painting scenes of life in the industrial North, his most famous works are those of urban landscapes punctuated by smoking chimney stacks and populated with indistinguishable figures, often referred to as his “matchstick men”. However, Lowry did also paint brooding portraits, groups of eclectic figures and unpopulated landscapes. Irrespective of subject, all of Lowry’s works are stylistically his own.
A large collection of Lowry’s work is displayed in The Lowry, a purpose-built gallery on Salford Quays. Lowry’s work also features in the Tate Collection, the Jerwood Collection, the Yale Centre for British Art, the Scottish National Gallery of Modern art and the Hepworth Wakefield in Yorkshire. A recently discovered Lowry painting, titled The Mill, Pendlebury, 1943, sold for £2.65 million at Christie’s Modern British Evening Sale in January 2020.