Portrait of a Young Man
Miniature by John Faed R.S.A (1819-1902)
This exquisitely painted miniature on ivory, which we have just acquired, has been attributed, by a leading expert in the field, to John Faed, one of Scotland’s best-known artists.
Although he came from an artistic family, Faed taught himself to paint miniatures at the astonishingly young age of nine and by the age of 12, was accepting commissions from important sitters and travelling long distances to fulfil them. After studying later self-portraits, I believe that this is in fact a self-portrait, aged between 18 and 20, which would date it to 1837-39, a date consistent with the young man’s costume.
At around this age, Faed became frustrated with the limitations of the miniature genre and turned to painting landscapes and genre scenes. He achieved considerable fame as an interpreter of famous Scottish authors, such as Robert Burns and Sir Walter Scott.
Faed regularly exhibited at the Royal Scottish Academy and was elected
R.S.A in 1851.
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