William Littlejohn is an acknowledged master of still-life forms and this piece demonstrates his ability to create pictorial arrangements placed between abstraction and representation. It includes some of Williams favourite themes, which reoccur throughout his artwork, such as mirrors, fish and Japanese fans. A muted colour scheme adds to the ambience of the piece and abstract geometric shapes accompany obvious reference points, such as the striped rectangles that resemble closed fans; the pink hand mirror; the apple and the fish. Even the oval shape of the frame is reminiscent of a wall-mounted mirror. It is a complicated piece, with the elements demonstrating a range of different textures and patterns and individual elements overlapping each other. The result is an ambiguous and mysterious piece, devoid of any obvious meaning yet rich in possible interpretations.
William Littlejohn was born in Arbroath in 1929. After studying at the Dundee College of Art, he taught at schools in Angus and at Grays School of Art, Aberdeen, where he was appointed Head of Fine Art until his retirement in 1986. He has held numerous one-man exhibitions in Scotland and participated in several group exhibitions in Britain, America and Canada. His work can be found in many private collections, including pieces owned by the Royal Bank of Scotland, the Scottish Arts Council and H.M. The Queen.