I n t r o d u c i n g o u r n e w o c c a s i o n a l s e r i e s A r t i s t i n R e s i d e n c e
When Peter Baker moved to the village of Meeth in 2012 he found a muse at the bottom of his garden.
The Tarka Trail — part of the Devon Coast-to-Coast Cycle Route — runs alongside Peter’s new house, and beyond the back garden fence lies the 150-hectare Meeth Quarry Nature Reserve. Two large lakes in the reserve were once massive stone and clay quarries. Its numerous ponds originally allowed china clay to ‘settle’ out of waste water, and these in turn were connected by ditches and sluices.
Peter took up his sketchbook and began to explore the lakes, paths, woodlands and abandoned structures of the reserve. Soon the reserve would become almost a second home.
The quarry had ceased operations in 2004. Seven years later it was reopened as a wildlife reserve under the management of Devon Wildlife Trust. Peter moved to Meeth the same year, and before long the Trust had appointed him to serve as Artist in Residence.
Peter has spent a year drawing on site, studying the changing atmosphere of the reserve through the seasons and in all kinds of weather. He has used his field drawings to develop studio paintings that are part of his latest Meeth Quarry Nature Reserve portfolio, on show at Salar Gallery in Hatherleigh from 17th July until 13th September 2014.
Profile of the artist
Peter Baker ASGFA was born in Rochford, Essex in 1948. His outstanding talent as an artist was evident when Peter was a child. At age ten he exhibited at the Mall Galleries, and when he was 15 Peter won a scholarship to study graphic design, illustration and printmaking at Hornsey College of Art. He went on to study at the Byam Shaw School of Art in London. Peter has exhibited paintings and drawings in galleries and one/two-man exhibitions ever since.
Peter’s art also features in many private collections in the UK. He trained as a teacher of art at Bath College of Higher Education and then at Bristol University, and taught drawing and painting in schools and community education with South Devon College. Peter was elected an Associate Member of the Society of Graphic Fine Art in 2010. For more about Peter and his art please visit his web site http://www.pabaker.co.uk
Devon Wildlife Trust http://www.devonwildlifetrust.org
Salar Gallery, Hatherleigh http://www.bohdgaya.net/salar