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Tate St Ives is able to offer visiting education groups the unique facility of presenting modern art in a building of outstanding architectural design, set in an area known for its inspirational landscape and in the context of the artistic heritage of St Ives.

The Education Department supports and enriches classroom practice through a variety of services and events, designed to extend knowledge and understanding of modern and contemporary art and to bring art into the lives of our visitors. Through encouraging pupils and teachers to engage with the different types of artwork on display, we wish to promote confidence in being in the gallery environment and self-confidence in personal interpretations of art.

Sessions at Tate St Ives often focus as their starting point on the St Ives group of artists; a period of time and place most associated with Barbara Hepworth, Ben Nicholson, Naum Gabo, Peter Lanyon, Terry Frost and Patrick Heron (amongst others). Exhibitions draw on both British and international works in the Tate Collection and works from other public and private collections. The sessions emphasise, different strategies for looking at art, the possibility of many meanings in a single artwork, the relationship between visual art and broader cultural concerns and new approaches to interpreting or creating art.

Features of our approach to teaching and learning are:
  • Using our visitors' ideas, knowledge and experience as a primary tool for engaging with art
  • Developing the critical, conceptual and analytical skills to look at and interpret art
  • Providing opportunities for lively discussion and debate

Education at Tate St Ives offers a range of services for schools and colleges including the provision of free resources for a self directed visit, tailor made tours and artist-led practical sessions - see School Visits for further information. Tate also offers opportunities for professional development of teaching staff, for more information see Tate Teachers.

Many of our school & college groups are regular visitors and have become Education Friends, building relationships with the gallery and benefiting financially through membership discounts.

Education groups must book in advance and we request that you give at least two weeks notice. All visitors under eighteen enjoy free admission and we are also able to offer free admission to accompanying staff.

For further information on any of the services we offer, please call 01736 796226/791113 or email

See also Schools & Colleges at: Tate Britain, Tate Modern and Tate Liverpool
and the Tate-wide Events & Education directory.

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