Piper, John: Garn Fawr, Pembrokeshire


A dynamic and vividly colourful screenprint, hand numbered 55 of only 70 and signed in the plate. Reflected in both his painting and stained glass design in the late 1960s, the print is typical of Piper’s exuberant stylistic approach at this time, not least in his use of mark making. Typical for a print of this age, the margin is slightly age-toned though the colours remain vibrant and strong. The print has been ‘float mounted’ to display the natural edges to the paper and it is framed simply in ash.

During the summer of 1961, John Piper and his wife Myfanwy explored the Pembrokeshire countryside in search of a holiday home. The following year they acquired 14 acres of land on the slope of Garn Fawr, near Strumble Head which included a ruined cottage and another cottage to act as a studio.

Garn Fawr is a strip of land running east-west and occupying the highest ridge of ground in the Pen Caer peninsula. The landscape is characterised by weathered rock outcrops, augmented by large numbers of glacially deposited rocks. The surrounding countryside of hills and fields divided into a patchwork by walls of local slate was to be an important source of inspiration to John Piper.

More images can be provided on request.

Artist: John Piper (British, 1903-1992)

Title and date: Garn Fawr, Pembrokeshire, 1968, (Levinson 192)

Size: 43.0 x 65.0 cms.


Artist description:

Born in Epsom, John Egerton Christmas Piper studied at Richmond School of Art and the Royal College of Art from 1926-8. In the mid 1930a, after a visit to Paris, he turned to abstraction. He became a member of the London Group in 1933 and the ‘Seven and Five’ group in 1934-5. During this period he became friends with Oliver Simon of the Curwen Press and his interest in lithography and print making grew. During the Second World War, Piper was appointed as an official war artist recording the effects of the blitz on Britain’s buildings. After the war, he became a Trustee of the Tate and National Galleries and in 1959 he became a member of the Royal Fine Art Commission. Piper is best known for his extensive studies of British architecture and landscape in oil, watercolour and print, and for his photography, stained glass, ceramics, fabric design, murals, stage sets and costume design. His work is held in many Museums and Galleries.