JOHN LOWRIE MORRISON (Jolomo) is one of Scotland’s most loved and sought after artists. He was born in 1948 in North Kelvinside, Maryhill, Glasgow and lived in Glasgow until adulthood.
Having studied Fine Art — Drawing & Painting — at Glasgow School of Art from 1967 - 1971, he went on to undertake Postgraduate Studies at GSA in 1971 - 1972 and then a Dip. Ed. in 1972 - 1973.
For more than 25 years John pursued a successful career in art education from his base in Mid Argyll, rising to Principal Teacher of Art & Design at Lochgilphead High School and Argyll Staff Tutor and then Art Adviser/Education Officer to Strathclyde Region.
Since his first solo show in 1976 Jolomo has become a highly successful artist. John is now best known for his painting of the west coast of Scotland, filled with colour and passion, having painted it for over 50 years.
Giving up his education career to paint full time in 1996, John has successfully exhibited his work in solo and mixed exhibitions across the UK, China, USA and Europe. And his work is in public and private collections across the world, with the Scottish Parliament in 2015 taking four large landscapes into their collection to hang in the Holyrood building.
His spectacular career has been captured on film in the DVD ‘I Know Where I’m Going’ by Mitchell McGlone Productions, and the 2003 BBC TV film by ARTWORKS Scotland — ‘The Man With A Golden Brush.’
John also frequently features in the media, most recently on the BBC TV programmes ‘Blethering Scots” and ‘Elizabeth: Queen of Scots’, Nick Crane’s ‘COAST’ programme on Oban and Argyll and ‘The Secret Life of Midges’. In 2015 BBC ALBA broadcast an in-depth profile of John. This BBC TV film profile was titled — ‘JOLOMO: Dealbhadair nan Daoine’ or ‘JOLOMO: The People’s Painter.’
Several books have been published — “The Colour of Life’ in 2001, ‘Jolomo: The Retrospective’ in 2003 and in 2013, ‘JOLOMO: A Passion for Colour.’
John donates a percentage of his sales to charity and makes significant donations of art works for auction to charity each year. In November 2012 John and his wife Maureen were invited by HRH The Princess Royal to become Vice Presidents of Carers Trust.
In November 2008 John was presented with an Honorary Doctorate from the University of the West of Scotland “for a significant contribution to Scottish Culture” and in November 2009 he received an Honorary Doctorate of Arts from the University of Abertay, Dundee.
In the 2011 New Year’s Honour’s List the Queen presented John with an OBE for “Services to Art and Charity in Scotland.”
In 2005 John established The Jolomo Foundation, a charitable body aimed at promoting and encouraging the painting of the Scottish landscape. Through The Foundation, The Jolomo Awards were launched in 2006 with the first awards being made in June 2007 at the National Museum of Scotland. And then again in 2009, 2011 and 2013 at the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. The Awards “prize pot” is £35,000 with the winner receiving £25,000, making them the largest privately funded arts award in the UK.
A major retrospective of John’s work was opened in June 2013 in the newly refurbished Clydebank Art Gallery and Museum; the retrospective proved hugely popular attracting over 20,000 visitors and a full programme of school visits over several months.