Jock McFadyen RA
Tourist without a Guidebook
5 February - 10 April 2022
Tues – Sun: 10am – 6pm
Free, no booking required
Friends of the RA go free
Bringing together 20 works spanning almost 30 years, this free display in the Weston Rooms explores Jock McFadyen’s fascination with London’s changing urban landscapes.
• You don’t need a ticket to visit this free display.
• Download our large print guide.
Jock McFadyen's free display features large vistas of London, especially east London, in a state of transformation. Here, the landscape and the built environment morph into one another, with graffiti, litter, peeling posters and shop signs alluding to the city’s inhabitants, whose presence is felt, albeit out of frame.
Across these paintings, buildings take on human characteristics – broken windows, shuttered doors, painterly scars and a sense of faded grandeur hinting at their past lives and occupants.
The display takes its title from an essay by Tom Lubbock, who described McFadyen's approach to painting as, “like a sightseer without a guidebook” – a phrase that struck a chord with McFadyen. "He had perfectly described my attitude to painting places, and since that time I have carried the words close to my heart as I wander about the place not looking for anything.”