Over many centuries, the Cornish people have travelled the world, spreading their mining and seafaring skills, but that has done little to diminish the region’s association in our minds with mythical kings, pirates, smugglers and romance. From the legends of King Arthur to tales of shipwrecks and bounty hunting, and from its close links with Brittany to its peculiarly Celtic brand of Christianity, this narrow peninsula at the southwest tip of the British Isles retains an ‘otherness’ that its people are fiercely keen to protect, and that gives it its unique appeal to artists like me.
A tension is created where the land meets the sea. There is a clear border between two worlds, sometimes softened and blurred by light and calm, while at others broiling waters dash against the shoreline. Cornwall makes a fascinating subject for artists, because it is both an ancient landscape and an extremity – a destination, not a thoroughfare. Away from the picturesque fishing villages and sweeping beaches, there is a dramatic interior of moorland and hidden valleys that provide endless opportunities for me to capture its magic.
Peter Town is a born storyteller, gifted with an ability to translate both everyday quirks and deeper philosophical musing through his work. Often using strong lines, striking colours and symbolism in his pictures, Town has built a vibrant portfolio.
Born in Bethnal Green, he grew up in Liverpool and was later educated at Bath Academy of Art and the Royal College of Art. Taking advantage of his ability to communicate ideas visually, he went on to enjoy a successful career as a designer while he continued to paint and develop his artistic style through drawing, painting, photography, and printmaking.
While many of Town’s paintings use strong shapes and primary colours, such as the Stairscapes series, others are quieter and more contemplative, representing a more tranquil inner space.
His Abstracts series features works where the narrative is more ambiguous but ever-present. He sees landscapes, interior spaces and natural forms as abstract shapes and colours, transcribing these in his unique style onto paper and canvas.