Book honours artist couple

  • Smaller Small Medium Big Bigger
  • Default Helvetica Segoe Georgia Times


A BOOK which tells the story of a Helensburgh couple who were both noted artists was launched at a reception in the burgh library on April 19.

‘Ted and Elizabeth Odling — Artists of the West of Scotland’ was put together over three years by their children, Noelle, Christopher and Nicholas. It combines their life stories with many examples of their work.

The formal launch was conducted by Nick, from Port Seton, East Lothian, accompanied by his wife Kate, son Gylen and daughter Morvern.

Odling-book-cover-wNick told how his parents met at Glasgow School of Art in 1949 and married three years later. They lived and worked on the west coast throughout their long careers as artists, both at Glasgow School of Art and as freelance artists on commission.

When Ted first came to Scotland he lived briefly in the Rowmore Studios at Rhu, and in 1965 the couple moved to Helensburgh where they lived for 17 years — first in Craigendoran Avenue and from 1968 at Balcarron, Upper John Street.

Ted was an accomplished musician, and played in the Helensburgh Saturday Ochestra.

In 1982, when Ted retired from the Art School at the age of 60, they moved to the island of Lismore. Elizabeth died in Glasgow in 2003, and Ted in a care home in Benderloch in 2007.

Over the years they accomplished a large body of work, Ted as a landscape artist, musical instrument maker and model maker, and Elizabeth with water colours, wood and copper engravings, embroidery and quilts.

The book, which contains many examples of their work, is published by Walker Fine Arts, price £15.

After the book launch, Nick presented a painting by Ted and an engraving by Elizabeth to Bill Anderson, chairman of the Anderson Trust Local Collection, who promised that they would be hung in the Trust’s 2013 exhibition in the library.