Scottish National Portrait Gallery
Scotland, despite its relatively small size and population, has produced an astonishing number of men and women whose lives have inspired and changed the world. The Scottish National Portrait Gallery collects their portraits for the interest of present and future generations.
All of the portraits are of Scots, but not all are by Scots. The collection contains works by great English, European and American masters such as Van Dyck, Gainsborough, Copley, Thorvaldsen, Rodin and Kokoschka, as well as works by Ramsay, Raeburn and many other Scottish artists.
Among the most famous portraits are Mary, Queen of Scots; Allan Ramsay's portrait of the philosopher David Hume; Alexander Nasmyth's portrait of Robert Burns; and Sir Henry Raeburn's Sir Walter Scott.
The Gallery pursues an active policy of acquiring and commissioning portraits of celebrated living Scots. These include John Bellany's Sean Connery, David Mach's Alex Ferguson and Calum Colvin's constructed portrait photograph of James MacMillan. In addition to paintings, the Gallery displays sculptures, miniatures, coins, medallions, drawings and watercolours.
The Scottish National Portrait Gallery is also home to the Scottish National Photography Collection. Established in 1984 to collect and research photography, with a particular interest in Scottish work and a remit to collect and exhibit international photography, the collection has grown to around 30,000 works ranging from the 1840s to the present day. It includes a key collection of photographs by David Octavius Hill and Robert Adamson.