Sir William Beechey RA, Portrait of Paul Sandby, R.A.

Portrait of Paul Sandby, R.A., ca. 1789

Sir William Beechey RA (1753 - 1839)

RA Collection: Art

Paul Sandby was described in his obituaries as 'the father of modern landscape painting in watercolours'. As a founding member of the Royal Academy, he played a pivotal role in the promotion of watercolour as a medium for professional artists. He was also an oil painter, printmaker, and drawing teacher. He travelled widely in Scotland and Wales, becoming one of the first artists to depict many of the wild and remote areas which became so significant in British landscape painting.

In 1789 Beechey painted two portraits of Sandby, one of which he kept and the other he presented to Sandby. The Royal Academy's painting is that which Beechey kept. The portrait which Beechey gave to Sandby is now in the National Portrait Gallery, London. The two artists maintained a close personal and professional friendship. Sandby acted as a mentor to the younger artist, causing Beechey to refer to him affectionately as "Father Paul".

Object details

Portrait of Paul Sandby, R.A.
ca. 1789
Object type
Oil on canvas

762 mm x 635 mm

Royal Academy of Arts
Object number
Bequeathed by William Arnold Sandby 1904

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