Baillie, Delia, RSA

1977 – 2023

A Painting graduate from Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and the recipient of an RSA John Kinross Travel Scholarship in 1999, Winner of the RSA Guthrie Award in 2000 and 2013. At Assembly on 2022-09-27 Baillie was elected unopposed (by 99 votes to nil) as Treasurer of the RSA, succeeding Robin Webster in that role and becoming the first Woman ever to hold that office. Tragically she died just over five months later. The following obituary was circulated to all RSA Members and Staff on 2023-03-13; "Delia Baillie RSA 4 August 1977 – 5 March 2023 Delia was born and raised in Glasgow where she received great encouragement and inspiration from her art teacher at Pennilee Secondary School. At the age of 18 she moved to Dundee to study at Duncan of Jordanstone College, subsidising this by working as a life model. She began teaching at DJCAD in 2003 and was elected to the RSA in 2008. I seconded Ronnie Forbes’ proposal of Delia to the Academy, as we were aware of, not only her great talent, but her passion for teaching and promoting contemporary art and artists, would significantly assist the Academy’s vision. She exhibited annually within the RSA and contributed continuously over these years to the committees of General Purposes, Exhibitions and Council. In 2017, Delia was the convenor of the RSA New Contemporaries, and in 2021, along with Jessica Harrison, co-convened the 195th RSA Annual exhibition. On 22 November 2022, Delia was elected as the first female treasurer in the 197-year history of the Academy, bringing her usual dedicated approach to seamlessly transition into the role. It was also her compassion for bringing her world into the Academy which attracted so many to her. I have two lovely memories of Delia in the RSA. An Assembly meeting, where Delia’s young baby, snuggled under her coat, was desperate to yelp out into the minutes silence being observed for a recently departed member. The longest minute ever! And that Varnishing Day Lunch. Delia, towering above most in her platforms. Magnificent painting on the wall. Young child on hip. The atmosphere in the room and a toast raised to the youngest ever to attend our historic meeting. At DJCAD, Delia taught on every undergraduate year, from General Foundation to Final Year, with her most recent role as lead tutor on the new MFA in Fine Art. As one of the few members of staff from DJCAD whose practice was based in and broadcast from Dundee, she offered enormous inspiration to our colleagues, students, and graduates, where her devotional painting and recent printmaking practice involved international residencies, bursaries, exhibitions, collaborations, curation, and public presentations. During this last year, dealing with a diagnosis of cancer, her incredible determination and spirit enabled her to not only be elected as The Treasurer of the RSA, but fully return to teaching, participate in solo and group exhibitions , give a public presentation on her practice, focus on a new suite of prints, and undertake a collaborative venture involving sculpture and printmaking. Even as recent as within the past weeks, from her hospital bed, she was in conversation with the DJCAD Printmaking Specialist regarding how to progress and develop her most recent print works, to be exhibited across Scotland. This unique, positive, constantly enquiring Academician, whose laughter rattled the windows of every building, will be remembered for her contribution as an excellent artist, tutor and mentor. Delia will be sorely missed by us all. The funeral arrangements are for close family. Further events will be organised to celebrate her life. Eddie Summerton RSA Secretary"

Works in which this creator appears

An image from the RSA collection.