The Young Waltonian signed and dated 'James Faed / 1881' (lower right) and inscribed on artist's label (stretcher) oil on canvas 137 x 93cm (53 15/16 x 36 5/8in).
PROVENANCE: David Anderson (1855-1949) by family decent Sir John Anderson, Edinburgh Private Collection, Scotland
EXHIBITED: Presumably Royal Scottish Academy, Edinburgh, 1883 no. 452
LITERATURE: McKerrow, M. The Faeds, A Family of Scottish Artists, Cannongate Publishing, Edinburgh, 1981, p.74, illustrated
Sporting paintings such as this example, showing country gentlemen engaged in outdoor pursuits enjoyed great popularity in Britain from the early 18th century. Although likely that the model for this portrait is one of the artists's sons, possibly Stewart or Mark, the youngest being born in 1873, the historical subject alludes to Izaak Walton who was celebrated as the author of The Compleat Angler (1653), a pastoral elegy on the delight and pleasures of fishing, one of the most frequently reprinted books in the English language. Faed was also a keen angler who often boasted that he was one of the finest fly dressers in all the south country and the surrounding countryside at Glenluce provided an ideal location for his outdoor passion.