Cameron – David Young Cameron (1865-1945)

The King’s official court artist who died in Perth

  • Born in Glasgow – 1865
  • Died in Perth – 1945

Sir David Young Cameron was one of Scotland’s leading landscape artists of the 20th century. He was also the King’s Limner (official court artist in Scotland). When he died he left examples of his work and objects he had collected to both Perth Museum & Art Gallery and The National Gallery of Scotland. Cameron’s family had links with Perth, his father having been Assistant Minister at the North Church for a time, and it was here that Sir David Young Cameron died in 1945.

Perth Museum and Art Gallery has 2 of Cameron’s landscape masterpieces. The Wilds of Assynt was painted about 1936. It shows the ruins of Ardvreck Castle on Loch Assynt looking towards the rising peaks of Quinag. Cameron has captured the essence of Highland scenery with its luminous atmosphere and deep shadows.

The oil painting was purchased by Perth Town Council for its newly opened Art Gallery and Museum in 1936. There it joined Cameron’s The Shadows of Glencoe which had been bequeathed by Robert Brough in 1926.

Perth Museum & Art Gallery now has a very important body of work by or associated with David Young Cameron.

Works by David Young Cameron in Perth Museum & Art Gallery

(It is not possible to display the entire collection at any one time. To view any of this material please contact the Art Section to make an appointment)

Oil paintings

Title Type Date
Shadows of Glencoe Oil on canvas 1925
The Wilds of Assynt Oil on canvas 1936
A Castle by the North Sea Oil on canvas 1924
Winter near Liberton, Midlothian Oil on board about 1890
Douart Oil on board not dated
Fort Augustus Dawn Oil on canvas not dates

Watercolours and drawings

Title Type Date
Interior, Blois Cathedral Watercolour on paper 1942
Ben Mohr Pen and ink on paper 1939
The Fair Maid’s House, Perth Pen and ink on paper about 1887-89
High Street and St Paul’s Church, Perth Pen and ink on paper about 1887-89
Beach scene with boats Pen and ink on paper not dated
Women at the waterside Pen and ink on paper not dated
A man fishing Pen and ink on paper not dated
Corrie, Arran Pen and ink on paper not dated
Fishing boats Pen and ink on paper not dated
Autumn Watercolour on paper not dated
The Rocks of Skye Pencil and wash on paper not dated
Morning mist, Arran Watercolour on paper not dated


Title Type Date
The Valley of the Tay Drypoint on paper 1931
Lake of Menteith Etching and drypoint on paper 1930
Strathearn Drypoint on paper 1917
The Royal Scottish Academy Etching on paper 1916
Souvenir d’Amsterdam Etching and drypoint on paper 1915
Ben Ledi Drypoint on paper 1911
A Sketch on the Tay Etching and drypoint on paper 1908
Holyrood in 1745 Etching on paper 1896
Set of 7 illustrations to John Buchan’s The Scholar Gypsies Etching on paper 1896
Tayside Etching on paper 1890
Arran Etching on paper 1889
Perth Bridge Etching on paper 1889
The Fair Maid’s House, Perth Etching on paper not dated

Related material

A number of prints (including works by his sister Katharine Cameron, Daumier, Legros and Strang and as well as Japanese woodblock prints) as well as pieces of sculpture (including pieces by Sir Alfred Gilbert, Eric Gill and J M Swan), Venetian Glass, Arts & Crafts Silver (including pieces by John Paul Cooper, Edward Spencer and James Woodford) and Martinware ceramics from David Young Cameron’s collection which were gifted or bequeathed to Perth Museum and Art Gallery also form part of the permanent collection.

Interested in finding out more about David Young Cameron?

  • Cameron is represented in many public collections around the world, and his work has featured in many exhibitions.
  • 2 catalogues listing his etchings and drypoint prints were published during his lifetime, collated by Frank Rinder and Arthur Hind respectively.
  • The centenary of Cameron’s birth was celebrated by Glasgow Art Galleries and Museums in a major exhibition in 1965 with an accompanying catalogue.
  • Bill Smith’s biography D Y Cameron : Visions of the Hills, was published by Atelier books in 1992.
  • Perth Museum and Art Gallery celebrated Cameron’s achievements as an artist and his activities as a collector in its 2007 Perth Festival of the Arts exhibition, for which a small illustrated catalogue was published.
  • Cameron is buried with his wife at Kippen Parish Church yard in Stirlingshire, close to his home, Dun Eaglais. During his lifetime Cameron did much to enhance and beautify the interior of Kippen Parish Church.

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