Exciting news for 2018


The Penwith Society of Arts: Portraits of the Artists.

The Penwith Society of Arts is about to launch its first publication - a book providing a unique insight into the work of its contemporary members.

The Penwith Society of Arts: Portraits of the Artists opens with a brief history of the Society, which was founded in 1949 by luminaries such as Barbara Hepworth, Ben Nicholson, and Peter Lanyon, and which moved to its present iconic gallery in Back Road West in the early 1960s. With a forward by Alison Bevan, formerly Director of Penlee House Gallery and Museum and now Director of the Royal West of England Academy, the book is the result of visits to the individual painters, ceramicists and sculptors in their working environments by photographer Michael Carter. His musings and photographic portraits reveal their singular personalities and working practices. The book is generously illustrated: the portraits of the artists are combined with images of their work and archive photographs of the Penwith Gallery.

This hardback publication will be launched at the Private View of the new shows at the Gallery on Friday 2nd February, from 6.30-8.30 p.m., and can be purchased from the Gallery and selected outlets at £25.

You are invited to us for the book launch of The Penwith Society of Arts: Portraits of the Artists.

Friday 2nd February, 18:30 - 20:30!



Members to exhibit at “The Cello Factory” in London.

The Cello Factory is a stunning, large, double-height space showing British and international artists at all stages of their careers.

Close to Waterloo Station and mid-way between the National Theatre and the Old Vic The Cello Factory could not be more convenient to visit.

Thanks to “The London Group” and “The Cello Factory”  members will be exhibiting at this exciting space in March 2018.



Penwith Gallery overflowing at re-launch


Over 500 people attended the private view of the Spring Exhibition at the Penwith Gallery in St. Ives on Friday 21st March.

After 2 months of major refurbishment work and the exciting discovery of historically important artworks, the Penwith Gallery reopened its doors for its private view and re-launch.

The newly refurbished space now includes a new studio gallery, sculpture garden and café, resuming the gallery's past role as a community hub.

The widely acclaimed Tate St. Ives artist-in-residence Linder re-opened the revamped Penwith Gallery.

Linder said: “The Penwith Gallery is a dream of a space. Its impeccable art historical pedigree, from 1961 onwards, as the home of the Penwith Society with Hepworth, Leach and Nicholson at the helm, has created an international legacy.

The Penwith Gallery is now poised to propel that legacy into the twenty-first century, keeping the vitality of the vision of the Modernists intact, whilst championing contemporary St. Ives artists and international guests in their forthcoming exhibition programme.”


The spring exhibition showcases the works of members and associates.

Included in this show are a number of guest artists selected by the full members.


There is also a special retrospective of the work of former member and chairman of the Penwith Society of Arts Roy Walker, including BBC archive footage of him in his studio.

The Penwith Society of Arts was founded by the colourful and internationally famous modernists wanting to break free from the traditional St. Ives Society of Artists.

After originally exhibiting above a pub on Fore Street, in 1961 the society converted a sail loft and pilchard packing works into the existing complex of gallery space, print workshop, studios and cottages. 

The society continues to be a successful group of 50 painters, printmakers, sculptors and ceramicists and the Back Road West gallery is second biggest in the town, after the Tate.

An exciting programme of monthly changing exhibitions will follow throughout the year.