Job title: Honorary Professor, History of Art

Email: ecummin1@ed.ac.uk

Elizabeth is a historian of Scottish art and design. She was a junior researcher on a national survey of Pictish symbol stones before spending twelve years as a fine art curator in Dundee and in Edinburgh where she was the first curator of the present City Art Centre. Research on the artist Phoebe Anna Traquair led to an invitation to write the World of Art series book on the Arts and Crafts Movement and to teaching design history at Edinburgh College of Art in the 1990s. She was an Honorary Senior Research Fellow at the University of Glasgow from 2000 to 2015 and an Honorary Fellow at this university from 2008 to 2019 before her current appointment. Throughout her career she has served on art and craft panels and is currently a trustee of the Mansfield Traquair Trust, the Scottish Stained Glass Trust and the Lorimer Society.  

Elizabeth’s primary focus for over thirty years has been the Scottish Arts and Crafts Movement and the Scottish Colourists. Her writings have been published in Ireland, France, the Netherlands, Norway, the USA, Japan and China as well as the UK. Her books include Hand, Heart and Soul: the Arts and Crafts Movement in Scotland (2006), The Art of Modern Tapestry: Dovecot Studios since 1912 (2012) and Robin Philipson (2018). She recently edited a short book of essays to accompany the 2021-22 John Henry Lorimer exhibition at the Edinburgh City Art Centre, and her latest study of the remarkable Phoebe Anna Traquair is due for publication by the National Galleries of Scotland in 2022.