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Beside The Wave

Beside The Wave Gallery, Falmouth

Artists John Dyer, Ted Dyer & Joanne Short exclusively exhibit online with The John Dyer GalleryThis is their history of founding Beside The Wave Gallery and the reasons they moved away from the gallery. You can buy the latest paintings and prints from all three artists online from The John Dyer Gallery.

Beside The Wave Gallery in Falmouth with a John Dyer Exhibition on display

Above: A John Dyer exhibition 'Beneath Cornish Skies' on display at the gallery in 1997 with John Dyer art poster prints, art cards and Mary Rose Young ceramics. The signage shows the original famous logo by John Dyer that was hand painted onto the sign.

In 1989 the Dyer family of artists founded Beside The Wave Gallery in Falmouth, Cornwall. The gallery served well for many years until the demands of a commercial gallery outstripped the benefits and the gallery was eventually sold to a third party allowing John Dyer and Joanne Short to build the acclaimed online and by private appointment John Dyer Gallery where the founding artists now exclusively exhibit.

The history of the gallery

In 1989 Ted Dyer was faced with a dilemma, to continue exhibiting his art works with the increasingly demanding and poorly run gallery he exhibited at in Newquay, or to look for representation with another gallery in Cornwall. Ted Dyer lived at Holywell Bay on the North Coast of Cornwall but had a longing to live and paint on the South Coast of Cornwall, so started to look for potential properties in which to found his own gallery on that coast as he had a strong national and international following. Working with the entire Dyer family a decision was made to focus on Falmouth, a thriving seaside town with poor art representation, rather than adding yet another gallery to St Ives, and in 1989 the 'Bits and Bobs' shop in Arwenack Street in Falmouth was acquired by the family. After some research into the Cornish name 'Arwenack' revealed it meant 'Beside the Wave' the family decided to adopt the name for their new gallery and Beside The Wave Gallery was founded.

John Dyer art in Beside The Wave gallery

Above: John Dyer paintings on display with Taja ceramics. During the refurbishment the family were careful to retain the original features, like this regency fireplace and brick wall which allowed for paintings to be displayed in a natural setting and was sympathetic to both the building and artwork.

The building was in need of major repairs and refurbishment. John Dyer drew up plans to convert a door to a new window to increase the street presence and created the original brand identity for the new gallery, and the design for all the catalogues and prints. After many months of refitting, the gallery finally opened with an exhibition by artist Robert Jones and ceramic artist Paul Jackson.

The inspiration for the gallery was to have an ongoing mixed exhibition space for Ted Dyer's paintings alongside other Cornish artists so that during a visit to Falmouth people would be able to view a wide selection of art work, poster art prints, paintings, jewellery and ceramics.

Above: Ted Dyer original painting 'White Sails and Agapanthus. Castle Beach. Falmouth', 24x30 inches oil on canvas.

Once a year Ted Dyer would hold a major exhibition event that the gallery would host and in the early 1990s was joined by John Dyer who had graduated and was now painting full time alongside designing for the gallery and running all the gallery marketing.

By 1992 John Dyer and Joanne Short were living and painting together above the gallery and the three artists, Ted Dyer, John Dyer & Joanne Short became three of the best know artists at Beside The Wave Gallery with many exhibitions, art posters and prints launched between the early 1990s and 2006 when John Dyer and Joanne Short left the gallery to found The John Dyer Gallery.

'Surfing and Sunbathing, Great Western Beach, Newquay', 24x36 inches acrylic on board. Cornwall Art Gallery Painting by Cornish Artist John Dyer

Above: John Dyer painting 'Surfing and Sunbathing, Great Western Beach, Newquay', 24x36 inches acrylic on board
Above: Joanne Short painting 'Spring Flowers Polruan'. 
18 x 18 inches, oil on canvas

The Dyer family

The Dyer family is predominantly rooted in the arts, the family name even goes back to the colourists who dyed cloth and the family had a history of tailoring in Bristol and Somerset.

Each member of the family was an artist with Ted Dyer being the best known at the time. Ted's wife Vivien Dyer, who painted under the name Angela Dyer or just Angela, painted bold modern paintings often with acrylic and palette knife up until the founding of the gallery, but then focused her time on running and managing the new venture.

Lesly Dyer, the daughter of Ted and Vivien, was also an artist and she focused on watercolour and mixed media pieces of the landscape and in particular flowers.

Artist John Dyer inside Beside The Wave gallery at one os his many Falmouth exhibitions.

John Dyer who is now the best known member of the family trained in design in London and returned to Cornwall to pursue his lifelong dream of painting immersed in the Cornish landscape.

In 1997 John Dyer married fellow artist and lifelong friend Joanne Short after she returned from training in art from her degree in Italy.

Joanne Short and John Dyer being married at Gunwalloe Church Cove in Cornwall in 1997

Cornwall Arts Marketing

Cornwall Arts Marketing was set up in 2000 in response to the lack of marketing and promotion of the arts in Cornwall after a successful bid for money from the EU through the European Objective One programme. On the surface, this was a great idea for Cornwall as it would make a lively and exciting schedule of exhibitions, promote evening viewing events, attract collectors and promote Cornwall's rich coast and art. However it quickly created far too many pop up galleries, trade shows and exhibitions and reduced the quality of the art being exhibited as funding would be paid to galleries for each exhibition they held, creating a huge churn of low-quality exhibitions and artists. Beside The Wave had to engage with this new process, even if the art didn't sell or find a market as the gallery was still paid. Eventually artists John Dyer and Joanne Short decide to stop exhibiting at the gallery and they founded The John Dyer Gallery which was better able to represent their art, host exhibitions with their working partners and support the wide range of art residencies and education work they did.

Beside The Wave sold in 2007

Ted Dyer remained as the owner of the gallery and exhibited until 2007 when he and his wife Vivien sold the art gallery and moved his artwork to the new John Dyer Gallery that was founded in late 2005.

The John Dyer Gallery

Joanne Short and John Dyer at The John Dyer Gallery in Falmouth

Above: Artists Joanne Short and John Dyer with their paintings in the John Dyer Gallery. The gallery is online and by private appointment with the artists in Falmouth. 

Founded in late 2005 as an online first gallery the gallery quickly built working relationships with many of Cornwall's most prestigious organisations and many international organisations too through the residencies and educational work of John Dyer.

The gallery has grown over the years and is now one of the best online galleries in the UK representing all of the artists' work in a professional, clear and accessible way.

Exhibition events are arranged by the Gallery in locations across Cornwall and abroad and clients are also invited to view original paintings by private appointment with the artists in Falmouth at the beautiful Edwardian residence that houses the gallery and the artists' studios. Full details of the gallery can be found on

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