John Emanuel was born in Bury, Lancashire in 1930 and moved to Cornwall in 1964. Following an apprenticeship in painting and decorating, and inspired by talks given by a lecturer from Manchester University, he began painting in the early 1960s and had his first solo exhibition in 1975. Today he lives in St Ives and works from his studio with a spectacular view over Porthmeor beach.
John's work has a strong, consistent style - a recurring theme is the figure, often set in a landscape. The contours of the figure combine with those of the land. Blocks of a single colour lead to the simplified but stylised landscapes that typify John's paintings. He works in a variety of media including oils, gouache, charcoal and mixed media. Like many artists associated with St Ives, he finds beauty in the harsh coastline and the unusual light of the Penwith peninsula. In addition, John makes regular visits to Cumbria, the fells and lakes of that region often appearing in his paintings.
John has exhibited widely in Cornwall, the rest of the UK and as far afield as New York. His work is held in private and public collections worldwide. He is a founder member of Porthmeor Printmakers and was commissioned by Tate St Ives to make an etching for the gallery opening in 1993. John is a member of the Penwith Society of Artists and a former Chairman of the Newlyn Society of Artists.