John Piper - St. Brides, Pembrokeshire


Original mixed media on paper, circa 1962, signed; inscribed with the title on the reverse;

Size: 38.5 x 58 cms

Note: St Brides is a small Parish and coastal village in Wales north of the larger village of Marloes. The Norman parish church is dedicated to St Bridget. The earliest recorded church was 13th century, and the site may have been a religious one since the 9th century. The present Grade II listed building is 19th century, incorporating some earlier structural features.  

The artist first became acquainted with the landscapes of south Wales in 1937 when he married Myfanwy Evans, with whom he founded 'Axis', a review of Contemporary 'Abstract' painting and sculpture. He made on the spot collages of Pembrokeshire beach scenes, and also became fascinated by Welsh architecture: the chapels, castles and ruins, which were to influence much of his later works. In 1949 they moved to a cottage in Snowdonia where he drew and painted many views of the mountains, which were always dark and brooding, without human form. An increasing demand for his work in stage design for opera and ballet meant that he left Wales for some time, before returning to Pembrokeshire in the early 1960s. In 1963 he bought two abandoned cottages, with no electricity or phone, at the foot of Garn Fawr, the distinctive rock outcrop topped by an Iron Age fort that dominates Strumble Head. Probably it is from this time that our piece dates.

Condition: Small repaired tear at edge of paper. Otherwise in good condition.

Category John Piper