Choose a link to explore
Have a look round

Discover the MacDonald Room 1

Aberdeen Art Gallery - McDonald Room 1

Aberdeen Art Gallery has a large collection of Victorian art. We have artists such as Joseph Farquharson, James Cassie and Hugh Cameron who painted the Scottish landscape and people.

Victorian paintings are rich in colour, action and drama creating stories about real life and fantasy.

The earliest artists of the Victorian era were painting soon after the end of the Napoleonic wars. Paintings of the cities, people and landscape of the countries affected by the wars became very popular.

Titian Preparing to make his First Essay in Colouring, 1856 - 1857 -  William Dyce RA HRSA

This oil painting by William Dyce is called Titian Preparing to make his First Essay in Colouring (1856-1857). In this painting, Titian, the 16th century Venetian artist, is a young boy looking at an uncoloured statue of the Madonna and Child. Titian is reported to have discovered colour through experimenting with the juices of crushed flowers. Here, Dyce presents the young artist, with flowers in hand, inspired by nature and religion. This fictional picture shows us Dyce's own views on art. He attached great importance to colour, light and nature.

Aberdonian William Dyce was influenced in his style by the German Nazarene artists whom he met in Rome in the 1830s. Dyce shared with the younger generation – John Everett Millais, Dante Gabriel Rossetti and others - a fascination for minute detail, literary and religious sources and the use of symbols in his paintings.