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    Other murals

    Phoebe Anna Traquair decorated two other Edinburgh buildings: the chapel of the Royal Hospital for Sick Children and the Song School of St Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral.


    Mortuary Chapel, Royal Hospital for Sick Children

    In 1885-6 Traquair decorated a dark, former coalhouse at the Royal Hospital for Sick Children (then in Lauriston Lane), creating a chapel of rest and a place of beauty to comfort bereaved parents. The commission was arranged by the Edinburgh Social Union, a new philanthropic society which employed artists to paint public buildings and organised craft classes. Traquair led a campaign to preserve these murals when the Hospital moved to a new site at Sciennes in south Edinburgh, over saw the transfer of those panels that could be moved and, in 1896-8 (while working at the Mansfield Place Church) repaired and extended the murals.


    Song School, St Mary's Episcopal Cathedral

    The mural scheme at the Song School of St Mary’s Episcopal Cathedral in Palmerston Place, decorated between 1888 and 1892, illustrates the canticle Benedicite Omnia Opera as a celebration of all creation. In the imagery Traquair celebrated the relationship between the arts. Traquair included portraits of the clergy and choir of St Mary’s and of important poets, writers and artists as well as representations of nature in all its abundance and beauty.

    In 1892 she turned down the opportunity to decorate the entrance hall of the Scottish National Portrait Gallery. She was then offered the Mansfield Place Church by the Edinburgh Social Union, the philanthropic group who had also commissioned her first mural scheme. In the imagery of the Song School, Traquair had celebrated all creation and creativity, and the Mansfield Place Church commission gave her a further chance to explore parallels between colour and music.


    Other Mural Schemes

    The Mansfield Place Church would be the third of a grand total of five mural schemes. In 1904-5 Phoebe Anna Traquair painted the choir of a fifteenth-century Church of St Peter in Clayworth, Nottinghamshire. Years later, and now nearing the age of seventy, she was asked by Lord Manners to paint the apse of the Chapel of All Saints, Thorney Hill, which she did from 1920 to 1922. These decorations were both painted during the summer months, where previously she had worked in all seasons. While these schemes recycled and adapted earlier ideas, she also introduced portraits of her patrons and their friends.