Breon O’Casey (1928-2011) was a versatile and talented artist, who was variously a painter, jeweller, weaver, sculptor, printmaker, engraver and etcher. His ability to apply himself so successfully to such a wide range of materials and making processes was an unusual talent, and he was fortunate that later in his career he was able to have small separate studios for each discipline.
O’Casey first came to St Ives in 1959 after seeing a film about Alfred Wallis. He worked as an assistant to the sculptor Denis Mitchell, and then for Barbara Hepworth, which he found to be a great education. He made his first abstract paintings soon after moving into Studio 3, which depicted the view from his studio window, but by the end of his stay he found the view too distracting. He moved away from St Ives, to a village close to Newlyn.