Piper, John CH

Read Biography

John Piper CH

1903 – 1992

John Piper is a hugely important British artist who has done more than any other to celebrate the British landscape and it’s architecture.

Born in Epsom Surre, Piper showed a keenness for art at an early age & a particular interest in landscape and architecture. On leaving school his desire to be a painter was hampered by an obligation to work as a clerk at his father’s firm of solicitors. Following his father’s death in 1926 he was free to follow his vocation.

The early 30’s saw him forming friendships with such artists as Henry Moore, Ivon Hitchens, Ben Nicholson, Barbara Hepworth and Paul Nash. He exhibited regularly with the London Group & the 7 & 5 Society & was also writing articles for various periodicals & magazines. He also collaborated with his poet friend John Betjeman on the famous Shell Guides.

During the war he was commissioned to record bomb damage, most notably London, Bristol & Coventry & in 1944 he was made an official war artist.

As well as his huge output of abstract work he is also best remembered for his paintings of churches, castles & stately homes. Along with Patrick Reyntiens, he designed the stained glass windows for the new Coventry Cathedral. He also designed windows for many smaller churches. Piper created tapestries for Chichester Cathedral and Hereford Cathedral.

He died at his home in Fawley Bottom, Oxfordshire on the 28th of June 1992