Allan Ramsay

1 portrait on display in Room 16 at the National Portrait Gallery

Allan Ramsay, by Allan Ramsay, 1776 - NPG 1660 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Allan Ramsay

by Allan Ramsay
red chalk heightened with white on buff paper, 1776
11 3/8 in. x 8 1/2 in. (289 mm x 216 mm)
Purchased, 1912
Primary Collection
NPG 1660


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Sitterback to top

  • Allan Ramsay (1713-1784), Portrait painter. Sitter in 3 portraits, Artist associated with 118 portraits.

Artistback to top

  • Allan Ramsay (1713-1784), Portrait painter. Artist associated with 118 portraits, Sitter in 3 portraits.

This portraitback to top

Allan Ramsay drew many self-portraits during his visits to Italy, when time could be spared from his busy studio practice. This poignant image from one of his last visits, in 1776, highlights the creative outlet offered by drawing when painting was difficult. Ramsay fell from a ladder in 1773, permanently damaging his painting arm. He drew this self-portrait while taking the supposedly-curative waters on the island of Ischia but his arm didn't improve. This melancholic portrait is one of his last works. Forced to give up painting, he devoted the last years of his life to writing and travel. More detailed information on this portrait is available in a National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue, John Kerslake's Early Georgian Portraits (1977, out of print).

Linked publicationsback to top

  • Rogers, Malcolm, Master Drawings from the National Portrait Gallery, 1993 (accompanying the exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery from 5 August to 23 October 1994), p. 57
  • Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 511
  • Smart, Alastair, Allan Ramsay, 1713-1784, 1992 (accompanying the exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery from Catalogue of exhibition held at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh, 1 Aug. - 27 Sept. 1992; and the National Portrait Gallery, London, from 16 Oct. 1992 - 17 Jan. 1993.), p. 92

Linked displays and exhibitionsback to top