Caroline Wiseman Modern & Contemporary
Patrick Heron CBE
1920 - 1999


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Biography

Patrick Heron was a painter, designer, writer and teacher, born in Leeds in 1920, son of TM Heron (the founder of Cresta Silks). As a child Heron lived for some time in Cornwall, where he eventually settled at Zennor, St Ives.   He studied at Slade School of Fine Art 1937 – 9.  As a conscientious objector during World War II he worked on the land, also having a short time at Leach Pottery, St Ives.  In London in 1945 he resumed painting and had his first solo show at Redfern Gallery, 1947. 

Heron painted frequently in Cornwall during visits, and bought his permanent home, Eagles Nest in 1955.  He taught at Central School of Arts and Crafts, 1953-6.  In the mid 1950s he began to paint abstract works and soon became Britain’s strongest link with the New York Abstract Expressionist. He played a key role in planning the landmark show of ‘Abstract Painting in England Today’ at the Redfern Gallery in 1957. Heron’s soft edged lozenges of vibrant colour became unmistakable and were shown in a number of solo exhibitions at Bertha Schaefer Gallery, New York.