During Cadell's first trip to Iona he met George W. Service, a Glasgow shipowner, who was to become one of his greatest patrons. In 1922 Cadell painted Interior, Iona Cathedral (private collection), which Service also purchased, and here Cadell used the same soft pink paint to depict the stone's texture in the interior of the cathedral as in the present work. Service decorated his homes in Glasgow and Dumbartonshire with paintings by Cadell and his generous patronage contributed to Cadell's popularity and prosperity in the 1920s.
Immediately recognisable from its distinctive outline, Iona Cathedral is one of Scotland's most historic and venerated sites. The burial place of the early Scottish kings, it has been an important Christian centre for over 800 years, with its architecture changing and evolving over the centuries.