Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Trust

About Us

The Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Trust was established by the Scottish artist Wilhelmina Barns-Graham in 1987.

The Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Trust exists to enhance the reputation and understanding of Wilhelmina Barns-Graham as one of Britain’s most significant 20th century artists, and through her legacy supports young people and other individuals to fulfil their potential in the visual arts.

The Trust is registered as a charity in Scotland No. SCO16854.

Our Aims

The aims of the trust are:

  • To foster, protect and promote the reputation of Wilhelmina Barns-Graham
  • To advance the knowledge of the life and work of Wilhelmina Barns-Graham through exhibitions, research and publications
  • To create an archive of key works of art and papers, to serve as a source of information about Wilhelmina Barns-Graham's life and works and to provide access to this collection
  • To support and inspire art and art history students through the provision of bursaries and scholarships

The Collection

Wilhelmina Barns-Graham bequeathed to the Trust a significant collection of paintings, drawings and prints. This enables the Trust to present her work in a number of different contexts through exhibitions and facilitate long term loans to public galleries and museums.

The extent of the collection offers a unique opportunity for art students and art historians to come to a fuller understanding of the evolution of her art, and her contribution to 20th Century British art.

All enquires and applications from public institutions who wish to loan works for long term display or for pictures to be included in temporary exhibitions are welcome.

Copyright & image requests

All images by Wilhelmina Barns-Graham are subject to copyright. The Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Trust handles all matters relating to use of Barns-Graham images.

All enquiries regarding use and permissions in respect of Wilhelmina Barns-Graham images should be sent to:

Rob Airey, Director
Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Trust
77 Brunswick Street

Or email info@barns-grahamtrust.org.uk

Archive & Library

Brunswick Street Library

During her lifetime Wilhelmina Barns-Graham accumulated a significant number of art books, magazines, private view cards, auction and exhibition catalogues. Holdings of material relating to herself, the wider St Ives group of artists and 20th century British art in general are particularly strong. Periodicals that are held in depth include Art Review, Modern Painters, Art International and Art Monthly. There is also other material that represents not only her broader interest in European Art from between 1940 and 1970, but also travel, cookery, history and biography. The Library also contains Barns-Graham’s photographic records of her work and her personal archive of photograph albums.

This resource is accessible, by appointment, to all students and researchers. Please contact the Trust at info@barns-grahamtrust.org.uk / 0131 209 7870 to make a booking.

St Andrews University

A significant research Archive of Wilhelmina Barns-Graham material is held by the Special Collections Department at the University of St Andrews. The Archive includes letters, diaries, interview transcripts, writings, newspaper cuttings and exhibition documentation. Access for researchers can be arranged by appointment with Special Collections and an online catalogue of this material is available here.


In line with Wilhelmina Barns-Graham’s wishes to introduce her life and work to existing and new audiences, we organise and support a variety of exhibitions. Since 2004 the Trust has assisted with solo exhibitions at the following public galleries:

  • 2005 Tate St Ives

  • 2007 Trinity Hall, Cambridge

  • 2007 Sherborne House, Sherborne, Dorset

  • 2007 University of St Andrews

  • 2009 Pier Arts Centre, Stromness, Orkney

  • 2009-10 University of Leeds

  • 2010 Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery

  • 2012 Burton Art Gallery and Museum, Bideford

  • 2012 Perth Museum and Art Gallery

  • 2012 Fleming Collection, London

  • 2012 Inverness Museum and Art Gallery

  • 2012 St Fergus Gallery, Wick

  • 2012 Iona Gallery, Kingussie

  • 2012 Gracefield Arts Centre, Dumfries

  • 2012 City Art Centre, Edinburgh

  • 2013 Dick Institute, Kilmarnock

  • 2013 Hawick Museum

  • 2016 Penlee House Art Gallery and Museum, Penzance

  • 2016 Beverley Art Gallery

  • 2017 Burton Art Gallery & Museum, Bideford

  • 2018 Jerwood Gallery, Hastings

  • 2018 Graves Gallery, Sheffield

  • 2019 Granary Gallery, Berwick on Tweed

  • 2020 Royal West of England Academy, Bristol


If you would like to discuss the possibility of having a Wilhelmina Barns-Graham exhibition, or you have any enquiries about previous, current or forthcoming exhibitions, please contact Rob Airey, the Trust's Director, via the Trust email info@barns-grahamtrust.org.uk

Private Galleries

The artist is represented by a selective number of commercial art galleries.

Please note that the Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Trust will NOT enter into any discussion regarding availability of works for sale. For all enquiries about works available for purchase please contact the following galleries directly:


Exhibitions have also taken place at and/or selected works are available through:


Between 2007 and 2011 the Wilhelmina Barns-GrahamTrust sponsored an annual lecture given in Wilhelmina Barns-Graham’s name. The annual lecture series is to be revived; look out for announcements. In the meantime the Trust provides or sponsors talks for the touring exhibitions available for hire to public galleries and museums.


The Barns-Graham Charitable Trust lecture was presented by Roger Bristow on Monday 7 November. The lecture venue was The Fleming Collection, London and the talk was The Two Roberts - Colquhoun and MacBryde.


The annual lecture took place on Thursday 9 December.  Presented by Dr Martin Hammer, Reader in the History of Art at the University of Edinburgh, the venue was the Hawthornden Lecture Theatre at the National Gallery of Scotland, Edinburgh. The topic, Francis Bacon's Painting (1946): The Making of a Masterpiece focused on the various impulses that went into the creation of one of his most important early pictures, including its enigmatic references to 1930s Nazi propaganda imagery in the aftermath of the Second World War.


The lecture was given by Mel Gooding at The Stanley & Audrey Burton Gallery, University of Leeds, to coincide with the exhibition A Discipline of the Mind: The Drawings of Wilhelmina Barns-Graham which Gooding curated.


The second lecture was given by Mel Gooding who presented his overview of Wilhelmina Barns-Graham’s work. It was hosted by the National Galleries of Scotland.


The inaugural lecture was presented by Nedira Yakir on the work of Wilhelmina Barns-Graham.  It was hosted by University College Falmouth.

Schools & Education


Sample Education Pack

With Fife Contemporary Art & Craft (FCAC) the Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Trust commissioned W.Barns-Graham - Colour and Line, an Education Pack for Secondary Schools in 2012, supported by The Cookie Matheson Charitable Trust.

Please note that this Pack should be considered solely as a guide for engaging students rather than as up-to-date teaching tool for the current education curriculum within the UK.


Free Download