Stephen Scott Young

Stephen Scott Young is known internationally for his watercolor paintings depicting Bahamian subjects and scenery, as well as for his drawings, etchings, and paintings of everyday subjects in coastal regions of the United States. Inspired by the work of Thomas Eakins, Winslow Homer, and Andrew Wyeth, as well as by the dramatic chiaroscuro of such Old Masters as Caravaggio, Leonardo, Rembrandt, Titian, and Tintoretto, Young paints detailed figurative work marked by a distinctive light-against-dark movement.

Born in Hawaii, Young cultivated an early love for tropical settings. He decided to study printmaking at the Ringling School of Art (Sarasota, FL), inspired by  Rembrandt’s self-portrait etchings, which the artist says “sent chills up his spine” when he first saw them. “I still consider my etchings to be some of the best work of my career,” Young says, “and I have a deep passion for etching. It is a soothing art, like a balm for the senses. It wonderfully combines science with art and satisfies my lifelong interest in the beauty of pure line.” 

Young began working in watercolor in 1976, and received his first prize at American Artist’s National Art Competition in Watercolors in 1985. In the early 1980s, Young made his first trip to the Bahamas, where he discovered the crisp, bright light that has become the hallmark of his paintings today. “The first time I saw the Bahamas, in 1981, when I was still 21 years old, my life changed forever,” the artist says. “I married Annette, a seventh-generation Bahamian, and my course was set for my long career, now into its fifth decade.” Currently, the artist divides his time between studios in Florida and the Bahamas.

Each masterwork by Young is preceded by numerous drawings, sketches, studies, and preparatory paintings. The spirit of these works in progress often exceeds the finished subject and, when available, are eagerly sought by collectors.

Young's work is featured in the permanent collections of several major museums, including the Asian Museum of Watercolor Art (Haikou, Hainan Province, China), the Brandywine River Museum of Art (Chadds Ford, PA), the Butler Institute of American Art (Youngstown, OH), the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art (Kansas City, MO), and the Greenville County Museum of Art (Greenville, SC).

In May of 2019, Young’s largest traveling museum show will open in Greenville, South Carolina.

Young is represented by Red Piano Art Gallery (Bluffton, SC), Shuptrines Gallery (Lookout Bluff, TN), Surovek Gallery (Palm Beach, FL), and Cavalier Galleries (Nantucket, MA).