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University of Cambridge

Open: Tuesday–Sunday, 11am–5pm

We are closed on Bank Holiday Mondays

Please note the house will be temporarily closed for 4 weeks from 14 March 2024

Book Tickets

Open: Tuesday–Sunday, 11am–5pm

We are closed on Bank Holiday Mondays

Please note the house will be temporarily closed for 4 weeks from 14 March 2024

Photo: © Kettle's Yard
Exhibition

Alfred Wallis: Ships and Boats

7 April – 8 July 2012

Alfred Wallis (1855-1942) is one of the most original and inspiring British artists of the 20th Century.

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Living in St.Ives, Cornwall and with no training, Wallis took up painting late in life ‘for company‘ after the death of his wife. Previously, he had worked as a mariner, crossing the Atlantic and later working smaller fishing boats. With only household oil paint in limited colours on found bits of card, Wallis made works that are, as he said himself, more experiences and events than paintings. ‘i do most what used To Be what we shall never see no more…’ he wrote to Jim Ede, creator of Kettle’s Yard, and one of his most ardent collectors.

On display in this exhibition were about forty paintings, from the reserve collection and the part of the house closed due to building work. They show what Wallis knew best: from brigantines and sailing boats to lug boats and motor vessels, often battling with an unpredictable sea. What shone out was Wallis’s exceptional natural talent.

Gallery

Alfred Wallis in the Collection

Painting

Boats before a great bridge (Royal Albert Bridge?), c. 1935-37

Alfred Wallis

Boats before a great bridge (Royal Albert Bridge?) Find out more

Painting

Trees by a lake, 1928 (?)

Harold Stanley (Jim) Ede

Trees by a lake Find out more

Painting

Five Ships - Mount's Bay, c. 1928

Alfred Wallis

Five Ships - Mount's Bay Find out more

Painting

Sailing ships and two steamers - Newlyn harbour, undated

Alfred Wallis

Sailing ships and two steamers - Newlyn harbour Find out more