Tom Henderson Smith took a degree in Fine Art at Newcastle University. After further study in Italy on an art scholarship, he undertook a post-graduate teaching certificate at Bristol University. Subsequently he taught for three years at The Arts Educational School in London before taking up a teaching post at Mounts Bay School in Penzance in 1980. Four years later he settled in St Just in Penwith, later retiring from teaching in order to re-launch his painting career, based at The Turn of the Tide Studio. 

In 2013 he and his partner, the artist Gabrielle HAWKES, moved from St Just to St Columb, where he worked from The Lanherne Studio.

He was an accomplished painter and draughtsman-designer who exhibited widely. His subjects were drawn from the Cornish landscape, coast and street scenes, especially local festivals.

In 2016 Henderson Smith received the President's Award at the National Acrylic Painters Association summer show in Chichester. In 2017 he was awarded the 'Great Art' Prize at the National Acrylic Painters Association summer show, held in the Crypt Gallery, St Ives.

A regular exhibitor at STISA open shows, he and Gabrielle contributed much over the years to the creative life of St Just, and St Columb. 

Tom died in November 2019 after a long illness.

His final project, 'The Dome of Human Kindness', was completed a few months before his death. Conceived in 1972 during his spell in Italy, his eighteen triangular mural canvases were inspired by the religious fresco paintings of Florence. On the artist's return to the UK they were stored in an attic and re-discovered by him in 2013. In 2018 the canvases were bonded onto marine plywood and the structure was assembled in the summer of 2019 and erected in the grounds of the inter-denominational Faith Forum site at Penmount, near Truro.

A posthumous exhibition of Tom Henderson Smith's work, entitled 'Reflections', was held in the Lanherne Studio in St Columb in December 2020.


Painting, drawing


Open Studios Cornwall 2011; 2014; 2017; 2018

2015: 'Heart of Cornwall Paintings', The Shire Hall, Bodmin (28 Mar-4 May)

2015: Open Studio Week at the Lanherne Studio, St Columb (4-9 Aug)

2016, 2017: National Acrylic Painters Association Summer Show

2016: Open Studio Week at the Lanherne Studio, St Columb (7-14 Aug)

2016: 'At Work, At Home, in Cornwall', The Shire Hall, Bodmin (5-30 Sept)

2016: STISA Christmas Open Exhibition (26 Nov-3 Jan)

2017: 'Cornish Coastlines', White Room Gallery, Launceston (29 July-30 Aug)

2018: STISA Spring Open Exhibition (28 April-22 May)

2018: 'Reprieve', The Shire Hall, Bodmin (15-29 Sept)

2018: STISA Christmas Open Exhibition (24 Nov-2 Jan)


NAPA (National Acrylic Painters Association)