Artist biography

SAMUEL SCOTT ? c. 1702–1772

Painter and draughtsman (sometimes in watercolour) of sea-pieces, river views, especially on the Thames, and some inner London Views. Born c.1702, ?the son of Robert Scott, barber-surgeon, of 4 Tavistock Row, Covent Garden; named as rate-payer there and elsewhere in Covent Garden until 1758, meanwhile acquiring a house at Twickenham. His early paintings were sea-pieces based on and sometimes copied from Willem van de Velde (1633–1707), many of whose drawings he acquired. His earliest dated sea-piece 1726; his earliest known pictures of naval engagements 1740–1. His earliest dated finished London view is of 1746, the year of Canaletto's arrival in England; he was probably spurred on to develop earlier drawings into pictures by the stimulus Canaletto gave to the demand for London views. Made numerous versions of many of his pictures. Elected Governor and Guardian of Foundling Hospital 1746. Pupils included Sawrey Gilpin 1749–56 and William Marlow 1754–9. Exhibited Society of Artists, 1761–5 and elected Fellow 1765. Crippled with gout by 1765, and painted little afterwards. Retired first to Ludlow, then to Bath, whence he sent one picture to the RA in 1771; died at Bath 12 October 1772, aged seventy according to William Marlow.

LITERATURE Richard Kingzett, ‘A Catalogue of the Works of Samuel Scott’, Walpole Society 1980–1982, XLVIII, 1982, pp.1–134

EXHIBITIONS Paintings and Drawings by Samuel Scott, Agnew 1951; Samuel Scott, Paintings and Drawings, Guildhall 1955; Samuel Scott Bicentenary, Guildhall Art Gallery 1972


Published in:
Elizabeth Einberg and Judy Egerton, The Age of Hogarth: British Painters Born 1675-1709, Tate Gallery Collections, II, London 1988