Wilhelmina Barns-Graham and the Artists of St Ives


Wilhelmina Barns-Graham and the Artists of St Ives

Due to the coronavirus closures, we have had to make decisions on our programme. We are working towards keeping this exhibition open for an extended period but please bear with us while we sort the details. Sign up to our mailing list to be the first to hear updates.

In the meantime, you can browse the Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Prints exhibition online and these artworks are for sale. Please consider helping to support us as an independent gallery by purchasing one of these unique pieces of art. 

Our spring season presents two exhibitions respectively exploring the work of Wilhelmina Barns-Graham and her peers.

Wilhelmina Barns-Graham: Inspirational Journeys 

This art exhibition explores the work of Wilhelmina Barns-Graham, a prominent member of the St Ives group and one of Britain's most significant 20th century artists.

Focusing on one of Britain’s most significant twentieth-century artists and her trips to Europe, this exhibition explores the effect these journeys – to Italy, Switzerland, Spain, Lanzarote and the Orkneys – had on Wilhelmina Barns-Graham’s practice. The works in this exhibition highlight the importance that new perspectives had on Barns-Graham. Made over a 50 year period, they range from detailed figurative depictions of specific landscapes to bold and colourful abstract paintings. The theme of the show is particularly timely and foregrounds a positive relationship with Europe and the inspiration found through travel and cultural exchange. This exhibition was curated by the Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Trust.

St Ives: Movements in Art and Life

Discover how in 1939 St Ives became a temporary home to some of Britain’s most forward-thinking abstract artists fleeing the dangers of the Second World War.

This exhibition explores the creative inspiration offered by the harbour town in West Cornwall, its surrounding landscape and its people to a generation of artists whose lives and careers were impacted by mid-twentieth-century conflict. Curated by Rachel Rose Smith, artists include Wilhelmina Barns-Graham, Sandra Blow, Terry Frost, Barbara Hepworth, Patrick Heron, Peter Lanyon, Margaret Mellis, Ben Nicholson (pictured), Victor Pasmore and more.


Supported by:

Wilhelmina Barns-Graham sponsored by Finnis Scott      
Sponsored by:

Related Events

Gallery Tours Tuesdays, 12-12.30pmLed by a member of the RWA staff or a volunteer. Free with your admission ticket. 

Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Prints 14 March – 12 April 2020, Academicians’ Gallery. Free exhibition. Artwork is for sale.

Travelling Southwest – The St Ives Artists 9 May, 10.30am-4.30pm, £30. Join specialist speakers for an Art History Day School.

After Hours 21 May, 7-9pm. £8. Experience the galleries after hours.

Sculpture Inspired by Travel 23 May, 10.30am – 12.30pm. Free drop-in workshop for families with Let’s Make Art.

Travel Painting for Lifelong Learning 4 April, 1.30 - 4.30pm. Free, drop-in workshop.

Image 1: Wilhelmina Barns-Graham, Upper Glacier, 1950, Oil on canvas, Dimensions 629 x 394 mm, P175 © Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Trust. All rights reserved, 2020. Courtesy of the British Council
Collection. Photo © The British Council.

Opening times

This ticket may be redeemed any day that we are open within the exhibition dates (14 Dec 19–1 Mar 20).

Tuesday-Saturday 10am-5.30pm
Sunday 11am-5pm
CLOSED Mondays
Last admission 30 minutes before closing. The RWA occasionally closes early for special events. Please call ahead or check the website for details.

Ways to Pay

ONLINE TICKETS: Save over £1 on adult admission tickets by booking online at least 12 hours before your visit. Simply show your email order receipt to reception to gain entry. Please note that each ticket can only be used once. 

RWA ART PASS: The Art Pass allows you to visit any RWA exhibition, as many times as you want, for one whole year. 


Adults: £7.95 (includes an 80p donation) £6.95 online
Concessions: £6.75 (includes a 70p donation). Pay on the door
Under 18s/SGS, UoB & UWE students: FREE
RWA Art Pass Holders: FREE Purchase an Art Pass
Friends of the RWA: FREE Join today
National Art Pass holders: 50% discount on ticket price. Pay on the door

Gift Aid Declaration: Purchasing a Gift Aid ticket will enable us to claim an extra 25p of Gift Aid for every £1 you donate. By purchasing a Gift Aid ticket you agree that you have read and agree to the following Gift Aid Declaration:

Please treat this entry ticket to the RWA as a Gift Aid Donation. I am a UK taxpayer and understand that if I pay less Income Tax and/or Capital Gains Tax than the amount of Gift Aid claimed on all my donations in that tax year, it is my responsibility to pay any difference.   

Wilhelmina Barns-Graham and the Artists of St Ives Gallery