St Ives .mobi

st ives harbour

Art and the St Ives School

In the late 19th century artists began working in St Ives, and in Newlyn, a fishing port in Penzance that then became famous for the realistic Newlyn School style of painting.


The Bernard Leach pottery was set up in St Ives in 1920, and after 1945 modernist artists known as the St Ives School attracted international attention with 2D and 3D work that was representational and non-representational (abstract). Well known associated artists include Wilhelmina Barns-Graham, Paul Feiler, Terry Frost, Roger Hilton, Patrick Heron, Peter Lanyon, John Wells, Karl Weschke, Bryan Wynter, and Ben Nicholson, Naum Gabo, and sculptor Barbara Hepworth - whose home, studio and garden are now a museum in the town centre.


In 1993 the St Ives branch of the renowned London Tate Gallery was constructed from a disused gasworks above a beach, bringing praise for the building and many new visitors to the town. There are a large number of artists, galleries and craftspeople active in St Ives today.


The St Ives School of Painting offers painting and drawing courses for visitors and residents covering figure and landscape, as does the Land's End School of Art. Visitors also often attend the popular Cornwall life drawing group in nearby Penzance with its wealth of artistic activity and history.