James Fillans

1808 - 1852

Sculptor, painter, poet and stone mason. Born Wilsontown, (South Lanarkshire), Fillans worked as a handloom weaver in Paisley before training as a stone mason. Working for architect David Hamilton (1768 - 1843), he carved the Corinthian capitals for the Glasgow Royal Exchange, now the Gallery of Modern Art (1832). Working from a studio in Paisley, he crafted marble busts of the local elite and other notables such as Professor John Wilson (Christopher North; 1785 - 1854). Around 1830 he moved to Glasgow and then in 1835 he travelled to London. He created a remarkable monument to the former Lord Mayor of London Sir James Shaw (1764 - 1844) in Kilmarnock (1848). He also executed monumental and graveyard sculptures which can be seen in the Glasgow Necropolis.

Fillans was also a minor poet and a painter, who exhibited at the Royal Academy (1837-50). He admired the Glasgow poet William Motherwell (1797 - 1835), painting his portrait on several occasions. Fillans also carved his memorial, again in the Glasgow Necropolis.

He is buried in Woodside Cemetery, Paisley, marked by a monument of his own creation.

Use the tabs on the right of this page to see other parts of this entry arrow

If you have found this information useful please consider making
a donation to help maintain and improve this resource. More info...

By using our site you agree to accept cookies, which help us serve you better