Notable Scots: Artists
Allan Ramsay ( 1713-1784 ):
Allan Ramsay was born in Edinburgh, eldest son of the noted poet of the same name. Ramsay gained acclaim as a portrait painter; his subjects included prominent figures such as David Hume and Archibald Campbell, 3rd Duke of Argyll, 1st Earl of Ilay, founder and first governor of the Royal Bank of Scotland. After Ramsay completed his first portrait of George III, Prince of Wales, in 1757, he was in high demand as a portraitist. Ten years later he was appointed the royal portraitist to George III.
Ramsay's portrait of his second wife, Margaret Linsday, with its soft edges and elegant interplay of light and shadow, showcases the influence of French painting. He was also a noted abolitionist - the intentionally emphasized "African" features on his portrait of Queen Charlotte made a strong political statement (Queen Charlotte was a direct descendant of Margarita de Castro y Sousa, a 16th century African ancestor who married into the Portuguese royal family).
Ramsay retired from painting after sustaining an injury to his arm in 1773.