The Ashington Group
(The Pitman Painters)
In 1934 attendees of the Ashington branch of the Workers Education Association, decided as part of their lectures series to study ‘Art Appreciation’. Robert Lyon their tutor from Armstrong College at Durham University tried to teach using a series of lectures and black and white lantern slides as visual aids. Unfortunately, he soon found that this method was not working with his students, and he decided to devise a more practical class instruction, experimenting with different techniques and media; the group ‘learnt by doing’. In 1942 Robert Lyon left to take the job of Principle of Edinburgh College of Art and the students, no longer as part of a tutorial group established themselves as ‘The Ashington Group’ an independent art group which continued until 1984, when the last two members decided to disband.
This work entitled ‘The Window’ was painted by Jimmy Floyd, one of the members of the Ashington Group. It shows his front room with a bunch of chrysanthemums in a vase. It was exhibited at the Hatton Gallery in Newcastle in 1936 and later owned by Robert Lyon and family.