Portrait of Lady Dorrian joins other ‘trailblazers’ at Parliament Hall

04 Mar

A portrait of the Right Hon Lady Dorrian, commissioned to mark her elevation as the first woman to hold the office of Lord Justice Clerk, has been unveiled in Parliament Hall.

Speaking at the unveiling yesterday the Dean of the Faculty of Advocates, Roddy Dunlop QC, said the portrait joined “those of two other female trailblazers in the legal profession” – Dame Margaret Kidd, the first woman to be admitted to the Faculty and Hazel Aronson, Lady Cosgrove, the first woman to serve as Sheriff of Glasgow and Strathkelvin. Dame Kidd was also the first female Keeper of the Advocates Library. Lady Cosgrove was the first woman to be appointed as a Senator of the College of Justice.


“Now joining them in portrait form is Lady Dorrian, every bit as much of a trailblazer. She was the first woman to be appointed as Advocate Depute, in 1988, and the first woman to become Lord Justice Clerk, in 2016. She has been and remains a great supporter of Faculty and of the independence of the legal profession. She is a huge inspiration to many.”

The portrait was painted by Grace Payne-Kumar, who trained at the Charles Cecil Studios in Florence, and moved to Scotland in 2019. She was selected as a finalist for the Scottish Portrait Awards and won the Member’s Choice Award in 2019.

Speaking at the event she said: “The style is inspired by the Old Masters, such as Titian and later John Singer Sargent. It’s a huge privilege to have my painting hanging amongst Scotland’s greatest artists, and I’m truly humbled to have been selected to paint such an inspiring woman. The fact that Lady Dorrian has used her platform to give me an opportunity to build my career is just one example of how we can encourage and propel one another forward as women in industry.”

In thanking Faculty for commissioning the painting Lady Dorrian remarked that it was a privilege to have found and recommended “such a wonderful young artist” to work on the portrait.