International Exchanges: Modern Art and St Ives 1915–65
24 Oct 2014 – 25 Jan 2015
Free to all
Exploring the national and international contexts which shaped art in St Ives in the 1940s, 1950s and 60s.
It is well documented that the artists living and working in St Ives in the post-war decades were inspired by the local coastal landscape and the ideas they shared among each other, but this exhibition explores the wider influences that affected their work.
Examples of painting, drawing and sculpture by the likes of Peter Lanyon and Patrick Heron is shown alongside that of their contemporaries from elsewhere in Europe, North America and Japan. These illustrate the ways in which the British modernists connected with philosophies, technical processes and visual aesthetics from across the globe.
The utopian ideals of constructivism found particular resonance with the St Ives colony. Originating in Moscow in the 1910s and popular in Berlin and Paris between the wars, it favoured the use of art for social purposes.
Meanwhile, shared traditions in craft and handmade objects unite the work of Cornwall artist Bernard Leach with the carvings of Romanian sculptor Brancusi.