Frank Phelan was born in Dublin in 1932. After studying at the Royal Architectural Institute of Ireland, he emigrated to Canada in 1953, where he undertook various jobs while taking art classes. Subsequently he moved to London where he lived with the Irish sculptor Frank Morris, and designed sets for the theatre. His theatre contacts led to an introduction to Nancy Wynne Jones, who invited him to be an artist-in-residence in Trevaylor, the Georgian house at Gulval, near Penzance, which she had converted to a kind of artists' colony. For a decade, Phelan divided his time between Cornwall and a rented studio off the Fulham Road, developing a highly abstracted compositional style. He forged a career which extended from Cornwall to Edinburgh, before returning to live in London. He has had many solo and group exhibitions and his paintings and mixed media works are held in private collections in England, Ireland, France and the USA.