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Artist Biography

John Piper was born in 1946 and moved to Cornwall in 1963 whilst still at school. He soon discovered the contemporary paintings being shown in St Ives which spurred on his own desire to become an artist and practitioner.

After studying fine art he taught painting, drawing and ceramics in schools in Penzance for twenty years before leaving in order to paint full time. Today he is one of Cornwall’s leading artists and his paintings are instantly recognisable with their hallmark palette of blues and ochres which generate great depth and vibrancy.

John's paintings reflect both his nature and his natural surroundings. He has been profoundly influenced by the Cornish countryside and it is that, in all its aspects, which is always the subject matter of his painting.

The recurrent themes in his work are big skies, rugged coastlines, windswept fields and moors and tough cottages with a history of farming and mining. The paintings themselves are full of contrasts and balances. Finely drawn or deeply etched lines are imposed on, or blend into soft blues, greens and ochres. These lines and textures on the surface give a sense of depth and ruggedness exposing a depth of colour and hue that creates images which immediately draw you in.

Whether the subject is cottages and farm buildings, looming skies or large expanses of moorland he creates a dramatic, often stark effect. He imparts his understanding of this environment with the viewer and the work generates a compelling desire to know and share John’s remote and magical world of West Cornwall.

Over the last thirty years John Piper has exhibited widely, with his paintings being shown across Europe and North America and are widely collected. He is a member of the Penwith Society of Artists and a former Chairman of the Newlyn Society of Artists.

Today he lives close to Land's End and works from his studio, a converted barn overlooking the Penwith moors.

Key Information


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