Building on a slow start from 1927, a dedicated exhibition venue and an administrative headquarters for the sole use of the Society was acquired, being the former studio of Julius OLSSON. This was 5, Porthmeor Studios, becoming known as the Porthmeor Gallery, and long to be the centre of artistic developments in St Ives. Artists took turns to curate exhibitions until a permanent curator could be appointed in May 1929, with the financial help of membership subscriptions. Invitations to past prominent residents of the artists’ colony were issued, and membership encouraged from other artists with Cornish connections.

A series of interesting lectures was instituted from such as John PARK, Robert Borlase SMART, Bernard LEACH, Samuel John Lamorna BIRCH and others. The first president of the new society was the highly esteemed Moffat LINDNER, with a supporting cast of artists taking roles for shorter or longer terms (George Fagan BRADSHAW, Francis John ROSKRUGE, W Herbert TRUMAN, Alfred CoOCHRANE, Arthur HAYWARD, Hugh GRESTY, and later Bernard Trevorrow NINNES and Alixe Jean Shearer ARMSTRONG).

In 1947 the modern artists began to organise separate exhibitions most notably in the crypt of the church itself. They became known as the Crypt Group CRYPT and  in 1948, the members of the Crypt Group became founding members of the Penwith Society of Arts PSOA.


St Ives Society of Artists


Tovey Creating a Splash pp 12-16