The son of an Irish jeweller, Walter Robertson (1750-1801) studied at the Dublin Society School from 1765. He painted miniatures in his home city between 1768 and 1784 before moving across to London. In 1793 he accompanied his artist friend, Gilbert Stuart, to America where he was given the opportunity to paint a miniature portrait of George Washington. The portrait was subsequently destroyed in a fire but fortunately had already been reproduced as an engraving. Still consumed by wanderlust, Robertson set sail for India in 1795 and it was there that he died in 1801, aged just 51.
Item Ref. 7224
Provenance: Edward Grosvenor Paine collection - Christie's Oct. 1996