Alfred Wallis (1855 - 1942)

Available works

Trawler and Two Schooners, oil and graphite, Alfred Wallis

Current exhibitions

Quay and Coast

A group show of paintings and ceramics inspired by the natural and man-made coastal landscapes of Cornwall

The Language of Sculpture

Exploring the many facets of sculpting through diverse works by selected sculptors

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Detail: 'Trawler and Two Schooners'

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Opening hours

Monday - Saturday

11am - 5pm

or by appointment

Tel: +44 (0)1736 795 888


Alfred Wallis was a Cornish fisherman and painter.

In Wallis' 'naive' painting, perspective is ignored and an object's scale is often based on its relative importance in the scene, giving many of his paintings a map-like quality. Wallis painted seascapes from memory, in large part because the world of sail he knew was being replaced by steamships. Having little money, Wallis improvised with materials, mostly painting on cardboard ripped from packing boxes using a limited palette of paint bought from ships' chandlers.

In 1928, Ben Nicholson and Kit Wood discovered Alfred Wallis at work in St Ives and propelled him into a circle of some of the most progressive artists working in Britain in the 1930s. Nicholson later said of Wallis's art 'something that has grown out of the Cornish seas and earth and which will endure'.

Wallis' paintings are held in many public and private collections, noteably Kettle's Yard and the Tate St Ives.

Steamship and Three-masted Schooner (1930s)

oil and graphite pencil on irregular shaped cardboard

h. 15 x w. 21 cm


Trawler and Two Schooners (1930s)

oil and graphite pencil on heavy cardboard

h. 15 x w. 31 cm


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