A new gallery was opened in St Ives in 1993 to display the work for which the town is internationally known, the modernist art created in or associated with Cornwall. Its location in a new building, designed by Evans and Shalev, with dramatic views across the town and seascape, provides an opportunity to view the work in the surroundings in which much of it was created. This guide surveys the history of art in St Ives, related to the changing displays in the Gallery itself. It can be enjoyed far from the Cornish landscape as an introduction to a particular artistic tradition, which has succeeded in remaining both local and international for nearly 100 years. Artists represented inlcude Ben Nicholson, Barbara Hepworth, Bernard Leach, Patrick Heron, Terry Frost, Alfred Wallis, Christopher Wood and Peter Lanyon.
The building; the Barbara Hepworth Sculpture Garden; what is St Ives art?; from Celts to Colonists (before 1920); a vision of simplicity (1920-39); primitivism and modern art; the arrival of modernism (1939-45); abstraction in action; abstract variations on a landscape theme (1945-55); widening horizons (1955-64); international affinities; experimentation and diversity (1964-75); continuing traditions and new directions; where else to see St Ives art - galleries in and out of Cornwall.