Collection Online
James Wardrop of Torbane Hill

James Wardrop of Torbane Hill
(c. 1820)

oil on canvas
76.5 × 64.0 cm
Accession Number
International Painting
Credit Line
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Felton Bequest, 1925
This digital record has been made available on NGV Collection Online through the generous support of Digitisation Champion Ms Carol Grigor through Metal Manufactures Limited
Gallery location
Not on display
Subjects (general)
Subjects (specific)
black (colour) half figures medicine (discipline) men (male humans) physicians surgeons

Collection of James Wardrop (1738–1830), Torbane Hill, Linlithgowshire and Edinburgh, until 1830; thence by descent to the sitter's great-grandson, J. C. Wardrop, until 1911; from whom purchased, on the advice of Frank Rinder, for the Felton Bequest, 1924; arrived Melbourne, 1925.

Exhibited Scottish National Exhibition, Edinburgh, 1908.


Reproduction, by Francis Draper & Son, London. This frame is a copy of original, made on acquistion

This frame is a replica of the original, made at the time of acquisition.1 The original frame was kept for a copy of the painting, which was made at the time of sale. The real value of this frame is as a record of early twentieth-century techniques and materials and the ‘look’ that was achieved in historical reproduction. Draper was used for at least one other framing project in the first half of the twentieth century: the gilded frame used for the Triptych with the Miracles of Christ, (1247-3) loosely based on historical precedent, made in 1922. As with a number of labels, the address on this one has been over-printed.2


1 The frame was made for Felton advisor Frank Rinder at the time of acquisition in 1924, noted in Ursula Hoff, European Paintings before 1800 in the National Gallery of Victoria, NGV, 1995, p. 223.

2 For notes on Francis Draper see Jacob Simon, The Art of the Picture Frame, National Portrait Gallery of Victoria, London 1996, p. 135. From 1884 Draper worked extensively for the National Portrait Gallery, London, and later for the National Gallery, London and the Royal Family.

Francis Draper
110 Albany Street, Regents Park, London, N.W.

The frame is carved from timber after being joined as a complete unit. The timber appears to be laminated to build the depth of the section and has been assembled and joined before carving. The corners are mitred at the front. The frame is gilded on a red bole over a white ground.


The frame has been deliberately distressed and given a size layer, which has subsequently discoloured to brown and contracted on the surface, breaking into islands and giving the frame a speckled appearance. The corner mitres are open, more at the sight edge than the outer, suggesting shrinkage across the timber section of each member.

104.0 x 93.0 x 10.0 cm; sight 73.5 x 61.0 cm
More Information
National Portrait Gallery