New Tate St Ives: new art for a new era

“As I was going to St. Ives,

I met a man with seven wives,

Each wife had seven sacks,

Each sack had seven cats,

Each cat had seven kits:

Kits, cats, sacks, and wives,

How many were there going to St. Ives?”

Warming news for art lovers. Following the reopening of its fully refurbished original building in March this year, Tate galleries’ Cornish outpost, Tate St Ives, will unveil its brand new 500 sqm gallery extension (known as New Tate St Ives) on Saturday 14 October 2017. A project that’s been fifteen long years in the works.

Aerial view of Tate St Ives

Building work is nearly complete

A long time coming

Tate St Ives is one of four Tate galleries – the others are Tate Modern, Tate Britain and Tate Liverpool. The gallery, which sits on the sands of Porthmeor Beach (just round the corner from a house once rented by sculptor Barbara Hepworth) was due to be shut for only six months. However, various construction problems have kept it shut for over a year, much to the vexation of visiting art-seekers. Consultation for the project began in 2003 and immediately (and somewhat inevitably) met resistance from locals, though they finally approved a plan to build the new gallery not upwards, but into the cliffs themselves.

A visitor roams the gallery

A brand new space

It’s a dazzling and essential addition to the Tate family which will accommodate much larger pieces of art and really make the most of the space, helping St Ives maintain its long-held reputation as the South West’s artistic mecca for both tourists and art students.

Art students at work in the Tate St Ives’ workshop studios

As if you needed another good reason to get yourself down to Cornwall.

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Kathryn Bellamy


Farmer’s daughter turned Londoner, writer and interiors lover Kathryn lives in Battersea with her boyfriend and chilli plants. When she’s not writing or re-decorating, she’s working on a series of children's books. At the weekends she regularly swaps London for Devon or Herefordshire.

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