Dr. (Robert) Douglas Strachan (26 May 1875, Aberdeen - 20 November 1950) was considered the most significant Scottish designer of stained glass windows in the 20th Century. Schooled at Robert Gordon's, he studied art at Gray's School of Art in Aberdeen, at the Life School of the Royal Scottish Academy in Edinburgh, and the Royal Academy in London. From 1895-1897 Strachan worked in Manchester as a black and white artist on several newspapers, and as a political cartoonist for the Manchester Evening Chronicle, until ill-health forced him to return to Aberdeen.

He died at Lasswade, Midlothian and is buried in the central section of the 20th century extension to Dean Cemetery in Edinburgh.


David being anointed by Samuel, Dirleton Kirk, by Douglas Strachan

Although Strachan was interested in Futurism, Cubism, and Vorticism, his work shows little influence of this. Strachan often composed his windows in areas of pure colour which were then defined by areas of silvery white.

The main east window of Paisley Abbey by Douglas Strachan (detail)

His largest commission was to design the windows for the Scottish National War Memorial in Edinburgh Castle in the late 1920s.

Grave of Douglas Strachan, Dean Cemetery

Strachan's work can also be seen at:


External links

  • Arthur Colin Russell, Stained Glass Windows of Douglas Strachan