Tag Archives: mixed media

About Peter Griffen artist/tutor and Denise Lithgow textile designer.

On the Saturday evening, two Australian artists, Peter Griffen and Denise Lithgow arrived.  They were coming to the school in Olhao to give a workshop.      http://www.artinthealgarve.com

From the moment they came through the door, it was again a case of instant recognition of like minded others…..

This blog will focus on the work of Peter Griffen and tomorrow Denise Lithgow.

Peter at work in the large warehouse studio in Sydney which he and Denise share.

peterstudio 2

Peter’s manifesto:-

“I believe that to make discoveries risks must be taken, the traveller must get lost.    A well planned journey can only lead to an already known destination.     At some stage the painting must go out of control.    From chaos the Universe was formed.      The artist enters chaos and by taking control, synthesising and simplifying, new images are discovered – images that are potent and speak from the past”.

As soon as I read Peter’s manifesto, I knew that this would be a painter whose work and philosophy I would enjoy getting to know much more about.

One of Peter’s large mixed media works….


Born in Adelaide, Peter now makes his studio/home in Sydney with Textile designer, Denise Lighgow.

Since his first exhibition in 1972, he has had over 50 solo showings throughout Australia, London, France and New Zealand.

His work is represented by galleries throughout Australia and Copenhagen as well as agents in the UK and France.


His art is influenced as much by the classical panting of the Renaissance as the serendipity of abstract expressionism.

Indigenous art from different parts of the world (in particular that of Australia) and its relationship to the natural landscape also influence his work, producing powerful abstract images that speak from the past.


Peter uses a ton of paint as well as collage and anything else that he feels is necessary to form the image.    His work has given me a boost…..and has made me realise, that perhaps I have become a little too tame….although I am quite sure a lot of people might find this statement quite amusing:)

Peter and Denise in their Sydney studio/home.


Today is the final day of their workshop at the School.    They will then be coming to London before returning to Australia.

Denise and Peter, st the School prior to giving the workshop…http://www.artinthealgarve.com


A Bientôt

Like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle being revealed……

‘As we go about our daily lives, just like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle being revealed, the seed of an idea can pop up with more information.    It’s vital to record these ideas, because even when we think we couldn’t possibly forget a moment of inspiration…..we can’        From my book ‘The Apple Exercise’

Self portrait – circa 1989 – mixed media 

Scan 107

A Bientôt

Self portrait from an interesting period in my life.

In my West Chester, Pennsylvania studio – mixed media.  

Scan 107

This self portrait, tells the story of the complexity and at the same time, simplicity of my life during this particular period.

It was 1988 and I was living and working in my studio which had no heat or running water.    I always say, it was the time that I grew up.

I didn’t realise it at the time, however the hummingbirds had already begun to weave their magic.


A Bientôt