Becoming a Member

Learn about how to become a member of our Society including the process, benefits of membership and when to expect to submit work!

Becoming a Member

Learn how to join the St Ives Society of Artists as a member and more about our process of selection below….

About Us

The St Ives Society of Artists is a vibrant group of Cornish artists exhibiting and collaborating in the Mariners Gallery, St Ives. Showcasing a range of work from abstract to figurative, sculpture and ceramics, the Society currently hosts around 6 exhibitions a year, as well as renting out the Crypt Gallery – a space below the main exhibition which may be rented to hold solo or group shows.

Formed by members of the St Ives Arts Club in 1927 and led by George Fagan Bradshaw and Herbert Truman, the Society was established to further the interests and promote the work of the many artists living in the St Ives area. Previous exhibitors in the Society have included Dame Barbara Hepworth, Peter Lanyon, Naum Gabo, Borlase Smart, Wilhelmina Barns-Graham and Patrick Heron.

The Society caps its membership number at 80 artists which means there may not be a membership application every year.

Benefits of Membership

Become part of a supportive artist community in the heart of St Ives with a range of benefits including:

  • Three wall hanging spaces for each members exhibition in the Mariners Gallery
  • Access to display space for unframed artwork and artists greeting cards
  • Priority booking for the Crypt Gallery, a separate gallery space located below the Society
  • Artists page with personal profile and work examples on our website

Membership Criteria

To apply for membership to the Society you must be a practicing artist living or working in Cornwall. An exception may be made if you live outside Cornwall if you can show the panel that you are able to meet the requirements of supplying work and contributing to the Society from your home location.

You must have a practice that allows you to supply work to our 4 members shows each year

If you are elected by the Directors to the Society, membership is priced at £55 per annum. Subs are due after the February Annual General Meeting (AGM) each year and you will be contacted by the Gallery Manager with details of how to pay.

New members are subject to a three-year probationary period to ensure that they are meeting the expected standard required by the Society.

To help the Society maintain our Grade-II listed building, members are requested to take part in a donated event each September to coincide with the St Ives September Festival. You will be supplied with a canvas and we ask that members create a small piece of work on this and all proceeds from the sale of the artwork will go towards the fund for restoration work.

How to Apply

If the Society decides to hold a membership process, the office will update everyone on our mailing list.

Prospective members will be asked to bring a minimum of 4 and maximum of 6 pieces of artwork, sculpture or ceramics to the Mariners Gallery on a specified date with a filled in copy of the application form and an artists CV. This process is usually held during the second week of January.

The work should be a good representation of your usual artistic output and can include framed or unframed pieces. The gallery team will allocate a space for you to present your work. You will be asked to leave your work in the gallery for the week while our panel make their decision. The gallery will be closed during the assessment week so the panel of directors can view the work.

Work can be collected from the gallery once the final decision has been made and all applicants have been informed.

If you are interested in becoming a member then please join our mailing list and keep an eye out for announcements in November each year!