John Piper (1903 - 1992)

Caernarvon Castle II

SKU: 11431

Signed Screenprint,

Numbered 38/75 in pencil

A print in this series is on display at the Tate, Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)

Height – 492cm
Width – 746cm



After a career spanning the 20th century, British artist John Piper is recognized for his mastery in painting landscapes and architecture. During WWI, Piper was inspired by artists of the avant-garde like his friend Alexander Calder, though the conclusion of the war provoked a move to representational subjects and inclusion in the Seven and Five Society (dedicated to a “return to order” in post-war art). WWII was also of great impact to Piper’s work—selected as the official war artist, he depicted the ruins of the England, employing his aptitude for depicting landscapes and imperial homes to portray the loss and aftermath of bombings. Often painting at night with buildings still ablaze, Piper created impassioned representations of the wartime atmosphere, defining a romantic perspective of architecture and topography engrained in his work thereafter.

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John Piper
1903 - 1992

Painter, notably of architecture and landscape, designer of stained glass and for the theatre, and writer, born in Epsom, Surrey. His first wife was the artist Eileen Holding, his second the writer Myfanwy Evans, and his son the artist Edward Piper. Form 1921-6 studied law and worked in his father’s solicitor’s office before studying at Richmond and Kingston Schools of Art and Royal College of Art, 1926-9.

In mid-1930s after a visit to Paris concentrated on abstract painting, but then reverted to representational work. First solo show, of collages and drawings, at London Gallery, 1938. Member of LG in 1033 and 7 & 5 Society, 1934-5. Piper was a prolific writer, working for The Athenaeum, New Statesman, Nation and Architectural Review, publishing his first guide book in 1938. With his wife he produced the influential Axis ‘ a Quarterly Review of Contemporary “Abstract” Painting and Sculpture, 1935-7. From 1940 for about 20 years had one-man shows with Leicester Galleries. His ballet designs included The Quest, 1943 and Job, 1948, as well as operas for Benjamin Britten. Piper was an Official War Artist in World War II. In 1942, he published his best-selling monograph English Romantic Artists. Was on several occasions a trustee of Tate Gallery, member of the Arts Council panel and a member of Royal Fine Art Commission. Stained glass window designs included Coventry Cathedral and Christchurch College Chapel, Oxford. Made Companion of Honour, 1972. Retrospectives were held at Museum of Modern Art, Oxford, 1979, and Tate Gallery, 1983. Goldmark Gallery, Uppingham gave Piper centenary shows in 2002 and 2003 and Pallant House Gallery, Chichester, one in 2003, the year that Dulwich Picture Gallery staged John Piper in the 1930s and Sherborne House, Dorset, its exhibition John Piper: A Versatile Artist. The Tate, Arts Council and many provincial galleries hold his work. Died at Fawley Bottom, Oxfordshire.



John Piper (1903 - 1992)
Caernarvon Castle II
John Piper (1903 - 1992)
The Englishman’s Home, 1951