About this artwork

Originally from Ireland, Phoebe Anna Traquair is recognised as a key artist of the Celtic Revival in Scotland where she spent most of her working life. Influenced by the Pre-Raphaelites and the Arts and Crafts movement, she painted murals for several buildings in Edinburgh. She was also a brilliant embroiderer, made exquisite enamel jewellery and created illuminated manuscripts. In this self-portrait, she taps into the tradition of showing herself as an artist at work, in her smock and cap. The subtle dynamism of her brushstrokes, together with her intent gaze, reveals something of the energy which she dedicated to her versatile artistic output. Her son, who bequeathed the portrait to the National Galleries of Scotland, called it ‘the best portrait of her ever done’.

Updated January 2022

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Phoebe Anna Traquair

Phoebe Anna Traquair

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