Although Patrick Heron was born in Leeds, he has had a long association with West Cornwall, which he visited regularly with his family as a child. He then moved back to this area and worked as an assistant in the Bernard Leach Pottery at St Ives in the 1940s where he met Ben Nicholson and Barbara Hepworth.
Heron was at the forefront the St Ives group of painters who explored the borderland between nature and abstraction. He was very much influenced by American Abstract Expressionism and prepared the ground for the British reception of ideas from the United States in the late fifties. Heron has had innumerable exhibitions all over the world and is also well known as a writer and art critic. He has had retrospectives at the Whitechapel Art Gallery in 1972 and at the Barbican in 1985, and several of his paintings were included in the ‘St Ives’ exhibition at the Tate Gallery in 1985.