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St Ives Artists' Exhibition - Dive into the Colourful World of John Dyer and Joanne Short

  • 9 min read

Joanne Short and John Dyer at the Crypt Gallery, St Ives society of Artists in Cornwall

Above: Cornwall based artists Joanne Short & John Dyer pictured in their exhibition in the historic St Ives Crypt Gallery at the St Ives Society of Artists in Cornwall in May 2023.

View the Crypt Gallery exhibition online now

Discover the beautiful and awe-inspiring art of Cornish artists John Dyer, Ted Dyer and Joanne Short in St Ives at The Crypt Gallery. This new creative body of work, full of colour and light, by these two iconic Cornish painters are a tribute to their home county, with painting after painting marrying detailed observation and expressive emotion of Cornish seascapes to passionate and unique portraits of flora and fauna, this exhibition showcases original paintings that will fill you with admiration for the ambition and skill of these three incredible homegrown talents. With decades between them as highly esteemed painters, this is not an event to be missed - join us in celebration of all they have achieved.

Above: 'Cornish Spring Bike Ride, Zennor' by John Dyer, 24"x24" acrylic on canvas

Joanne Short and John Dyer's shared passion for art

It's no surprise that John Dyer and Joanne Short found themselves drawn to the coastal town of St Ives, where they have decided to locate their latest exhibition of new paintings. The small fishing town of St Ives in west Cornwall has always been a hub for artists seeking inspiration from the picturesque Cornish seaside - from famous historical british artists such as Turner to artists Alfred Wallis and Christopher Wood and later younger artists such as Patrick Heron, Terry Frost and Roger Hilton. The list of artists inspired by the colour and light of this tiny location, is endless.


Above: 'Roses in the Window, Mousehole' by Joanne Short, 24"x24" oil on canvas

Despite Joanne and John's shared love for painting, their styles are vastly different, making for an eclectic and breathtaking display. Visitors can expect to marvel at John Dyer's vivid and colourful interpretations of Cornwall's coastline, while Joanne Short's delicate and intricate brushstrokes capture the essence of the region's flora as a foreground to Cornwall's spectacular landscape.

Above: 'Whale Watching, St Michael's Mount' by John Dyer, 12"x10" acrylic on canvas 

John Dyer works in Acrylic paint, which enables him to work at speed, keeping the colours he uses bright and crisp. His paintings are vibrant and always tell a story. His narrative is uplifting and perfectly captures the Cornwall we know and love and the Cornish holidays we have had.

 'Beachside Cottage Gardens, Old Grimsby, Tresco' by Joanne Short, 24"x24" oil on canvas


Above: 'Beachside Cottage Gardens, Old Grimsby, Tresco' by Joanne Short, 24"x24" oil on canvas

Joanne Short paints in oil - her work is less of a narrative and more about capturing a moment in time. Her paintings are bright and breezy, invariably with beautiful flowers in the foreground. Despite the bright colours, her paintings are calm and help create a serene atmosphere in the room.

History of Art in St Ives

The vibrant artwork scene in St Ives dates back to the early 1900s, when it became a hub for artists of all kinds. The most famous art movement to emerge from here were The St Ives School artists, who fused traditional and modern art practices. This period saw painters such as Alfred Wallis, Ben and Winifred Nicholson, and later Peter Lanyon, Patrick Heron and Terry Frost gravitating to St Ives in search of inspiration.

In 1955 the St Ives Society of Artists was established, bringing together contemporary and modern art with a heavy focus on landscape painting. It became home to some of the world’s leading artists, sculptors and printmakers.

Above: The Crypt Gallery with the John Dyer Gallery exhibition on display. The Crypt gallery is below the St Ives Society of Artists Mariners Gallery in St Ives in Cornwall

The Crypt Gallery is situated below the St Ives Society in the Mariners Church in St Ives. In 1946 a modernist splinter group, calling themselves 'The Crypt Group' made up initially of Sven Berlin, Peter Lanyon, Phil Whiting and Bryan Wynter began showing their work here, soon to be joined by the likes of Barbara Hepworth, Ben Nicholson, John Wells and Wilhelmina Barns-Graham. By 1947 seventeen artists were showing at The Crypt.

"This venue definitely has an incredible history and it will be exciting and an honour to be showing our work somewhere frequented in the past by such huge names in the history of British art"
Joanne Short 

As a result of such a rich history, the Tate St Ives was constructed to house and display collections of St Ives School art. The Barbara Hepworth Museum and sculpture garden house an incredible collection of her sculptures and the town has always been home to many small independent art galleries showcasing local artists' work. St Ives continues to be a hub of art.

The John Dyer Gallery Exhibition at The Crypt Gallery

The Crypt Gallery is situated beneath the Mariners church building Gallery of the St Ives Society of Artists in Norway Square, just up from St Ives Harbour Wharf road, on Church Place.

The John Dyer Gallery exhibition in the Crypt Gallery St Ives, Cornwall

A sneak peek of some of the featured artwork in the exhibition

Paintings of St Ives


Above: 'A Day at the Beach, Porthminster, St Ives' by John Dyer, 100 x 100cm acrylic on canvas

This painting by John Dyer of Porthminster Beach captures this idyllic destination's essence perfectly. Set in the picturesque town of St Ives, the beach is surrounded by happy people soaking up the sun, building sandcastles, and enjoying the clear blue waters. The vibrant colours of the windbreaks and towels contrast beautifully with the serene blues of the ocean. Seals watch on as people surf and play in the waves, while fishing boats gently bob in the bay. In the distance, the iconic Godrevy Lighthouse stands tall against the skyline. With its lively atmosphere and scenic views, it's no wonder that Porthminster Beach is a favourite among tourists and locals alike. 


Above: 'Watching the Seals, Godrevy Lighthouse' by John Dyer, 100cm x 100cm acrylic on canvas

Nestled on the gorgeous coastline of St Ives lies a breathtaking scene that awakens the senses. This painting of Godrevy lighthouse captures the essence of a truly mesmerising location. The vibrant colours of the fishing boats compliment the lively scene of the seagulls and puffins flying above. As if that weren't enough, the seals bask lazily on the beach, while others swim beneath the waves. The headland decorated with vivid sea thrift brings an extra element of beauty to this natural yet awe-inspiring view. It's easy to get lost in the details of this painting and forget about the hustle and bustle of everyday life - a true feast for the eyes.


Above: 'Summer Sunshine and Sandpipers, St Ives' by John Dyer, 24"x24" acrylic on canvas

Located in beautiful St Ives, the Harbour beach boasts a stunning spectacle of bright yellow sand. It's truly mesmerizing to see how the vibrant coloured flowers and palms in the foreground of this painting complement the sand's hue. The beach is bustling with life - people and dogs joyfully stroll around while seagulls soar above. As you take in the scenery, brightly painted fishing boats out at sea and in the harbour catch your eye. The picturesque Godrevey lighthouse looms in the distance, adding to the beauty of this already breathtaking cornish landscape. The Harbour beach in St Ives is sure to leave a lasting impression on all who visit it and John captures it all in this stunning painting.



Above: 'Tropical Days at Porthmeor Beach, St Ives' by John Dyer, 33"x40" acrylic on board

John Dyer's stunning painting of Porthmeor Beach in St Ives is a true masterpiece that captures the essence of a perfect summer holiday. The white sand stretches out as far as the eye can see, inviting visitors to soak up the sun and bask in the warmth of the Cornish coast. In the foreground, vibrant flowers and plants burst with colour, adding to the vivid atmosphere of the painting. Boats and yachts gently bob up and down in the sparkling sea, while people frolic in the waves, enjoying the ultimate beach experience. It's hard not to feel transported to this picture-perfect scene when admiring John Dyer's masterful work.



Above: 'Sunny Seaside Flowers, St Ives', by Joanne Short, 24"x24" oil on canvas

Step into Joanne Short's masterpiece and be transported to the beautiful St Ives. With colourful boats nestled in the harbour and an abundance of yellow, white and pink daisies in the foreground, the painting comes to life. The water's soft green and blue tones beautifully capture the essence of St Ives, a cornish town renowned for its stunning scenery. The details and use of colours in Joanne Short's painting perfectly depict the vibrant spirit of St Ives, making it a wonderful addition to any art collection.


'Early Morning Porthminster Beach, St Ives' by Joanne Short, 16"x16" oil on canvas


Above: 'Early Morning Porthminster Beach, St Ives' by Joanne Short, 16"x16" oil on canvas

Joanne Short's breathtaking painting of Porthminster Beach is a masterpiece that captures the tranquil atmosphere of a peaceful morning. The bluish-green water gently kisses the shore while golden sand gleams in the sunlight. In the foreground, magnificent agapanthus flowers sway gracefully in the gentle breeze. One can't help but imagine the salty ocean air and the calming sound of waves lapping against the shore. The setting is unmistakably St Ives, a beautiful coastal town in Cornwall that has long been a hub for artists and creatives alike. Short's painting effortlessly captures the essence of this stunning location and leaves viewers in awe of its serene beauty.

Above: 'Under the Light of the Moon Porthgwidden, St Ives' by Joanne Short, 12x12 inches oil on canvas

This oil painting by Joanne Short depicts the beauty of Porthgwidden beach, highlighting its wild and romantic charm. The sea is painted with shades of blue under the moonlight while foxgloves and wildflowers in the foreground add elegance to the scene. Additionally, the dynamic colours and composition in the sea create movement and depth. This painting is an exceptional addition to any home as it imparts a touch of magic to the surroundings.


Above: 'High Summer, Hayle Sands' by Ted Dyer, 14"x14" oil on canvas

This painting by Ted Dyer is a masterpiece that captures the beauty of St Ives Bay. The blue yacht sailing up the mouth of the river at Hayle sands is a striking sight, especially with the reflections of the sails in the clear water. The union of the sea and sky at the horizon in a sumptuous blue evokes a sense of tranquility, while the wildflowers waving gently in the foreground add a touch of serenity. The distant Godrevey lighthouse offers a majestic backdrop to the painting. It is no wonder that St Ives has attracted artists for centuries. Ted Dyer's stunning creation is a testament to the charm and allure of the incredible cornish light.

Exploring what inspired these two Cornish artists to create this new body of work

Talking about this area and what inspired her paintings of St Ives Joanne says -

"We have visited St Ives countless times over the years and taken in contemporary and modern work of the St Ives Artists while visiting the Tate collection and various galleries and the time has come for us to be St Ives Artists ourselves! We both love the local landscape and the Cornish coastline in this area is stunning. "

John says

"This fishing town in west Cornwall, is known for its incredible soft light and bright colourful boats that dot the pretty harbour. In the summertime, St Ives exudes charm and bustle with its picturesque streets lined with quaint storefronts and fishermens cottages. There are always stunning views of the turquoise sea and rugged cliffs and we love soaking up the town's vibrant atmosphere. The harbour bustles with fishermen bringing in the day's catch, while seagulls wheel overhead and sandpipers whizz around the beach like wind-up toys looking for pasty crumbs. St Ives is a true gem, with a rich history of art and all the seaside charm one could desire. It is the perfect place to paint!"

An exhibition well worth a visit

With this incredible showcase of talent on offer, it's clear why the John Dyer Gallery exhibition at The Crypt Gallery is the go-to destination for art lovers visiting the picturesque St Ives. Whether you're drawn in by Joanne Short's use of vivid colour and flat surfaces, or intrigued by the fun narrative found in John Dyer's pieces, or the exquisite use of paint to visually describe water in Ted Dyer's work this exhibition offers something for everyone. With its convenient location and flexible opening hours, The John Dyer Gallery exhibition at The Crypt should be sure to feature high up on your itinerary when visiting Cornwall this week. So why not make a day of it and see where an afternoon spent marveling at these remarkable works from two artists from this corner of the county will take you? Be inspired and let your creativity flow with a magical journey through this spectacular exhibition.

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