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The Art of John Piper

A major artist of the twentieth century, John Piper (1903–92) was a pioneer of modern abstract art in Britain during the 1930s. Piper captured some of the most iconic moments of his time through his art, never letting himself be penned in by a single mode or method of expression. He painted the ruins of the Blitz in Coventry, London, and Bath; the beauty and loneliness of the summits and panoramas of Snowdonia; as well as quaint rural churches around Britain. He was also the designer of nine of the first productions of the operas and a ballet by Benjamin Britten, and a pioneer of lithography, screenprinting, and the use of color in ceramics. Finally, he was the designer of stained glass for the great cathedrals and churches of Coventry, Eton College, and Plymouth.
The first published survey of the whole of John Piper’s art throughout his long life, this volume offers a full account of his artistic ouevre with over three hundred beautiful images and supporting text written by two leading experts on Piper.

500 pages | 300 color plates | 9 1/2 x 11 | © 2016

Art: Art--General Studies

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"Fraiser Jenkins sets out his facts clearly and constructively. Each opinion is backed up by evidence and linked to the next, a linkage that is usually intuitive and revealing. This densely researched book leaves us with a much greater sense of the artist's singularity and his limitations, the dogged certitude he showed in developing his art in isolation from the mainstream."

Times Literary Supplement

"Generously illustrated, with more than 300 images, most in color, this coffee-table-size volume will be valued for its comprehensive overview of Piper’s art-making career and for its range of images, including not just Piper’s celebrated prints and paintings but also his stage designs, stained glass, mosaics, and ceramics. The full range of Piper’s distinctive imagery is on display here, notably the still lifes, landscapes, renderings of rural churches and historic buildings, and depictions of picturesque ruins that earned him a key place amid the modern romantic painters of the 1930s and 1940s. The book is biographical in approach, and of particular interest to historians will be the chapter that explores the abstract works Piper created during production of the modernist periodical Axis, edited by his soon-to-be wife, Myfanwy Evans. The book's 41-page, richly illustrated 'gazetteer' includes a selection of Piper’s public commissions (1955–79), among them an ambitious program of stained glass for Coventry Cathedral. Highly recommended."


Table of Contents

Chapter One: Epsom
Chapter Two: Beckworth March 1927 – June 1934
Chapter Three: Myfanwy Evans and AXIS June 1934 – June 1937
Chapter Four: The Romantic Style July 1937 – 1941
Chapter Five: Neo-Romanticism 1941 –45
Chapter Six: Wales and Britten 1945 –53
Chapter Seven: Colours for Glass 1952 –55
Chapter Eight: Landscapes in France and Italy 1955 –63
Chapter Nine: The Marlborough Years 1 1963 –66
Chapter Ten: The Marlborough Years 2 1967 –82
Chapter Eleven: Retrospective Exhibitions, Last Landscapes and Flower Paintings 1983 –92
Gazetteer: A Selection of Public Commissions
A Selection of Books by and about John Piper
Picture Credits
General Index
Works Index

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