John Byrne, one of the best artists Scotland's produced, died today. He was a natural : he had to draw (write,paint) to live.
I was mostly familiar with his painting, drawing and print making and he was very prolific. In addition to this, he was a successful writer and playwright.
Definitely a big Byrne-shaped hole in the Scottish arts scene.
I saw a lot of his work over the years in Edinburgh, and would even occasionally see the man himself around town (or in the Art Shop). A very dapper dresser. He was fond of doing self-portraits, often with a cigarette in his mouth: not very good for his health although he lived to a good age (like another famous artist smoker, David Hockney).
Although I'll miss seeing new art works from him, I look forward to a proper retrospective exhibition.