Sam Peacock is an artist we’ve followed for a while here on Inspiring City. We interviewed him once at his home in South West London where in his garage he has a makeshift forge which he uses to burn the colours and patterns he needs in order to create his abstract landscapes.
That trip ended up with me and my father (visiting from the glorious north) drunk in the gutter as Sam proceeded to take us to his local at 12 in the afternoon. It was a pretty good day though to be fair and we got some good insight into the working methods of this earthy painter.
Sam’s previous series of works Ironsea and Fractured have gained him a reputation as an artist with something to say. Fractured in particular, a visual rally against fracking, gained the attention of the great and the good from across the environmental spectrum. His works in that series were abstract landscape creations of areas which had been earmarked for fracking to take place.
Now, his latest series ‘Province‘ follows a similar theme in that it is inspired very much by place. For some time he says “I have been interested to explore myth and legend associated with forgotten places and roads along the Sussex peninsula. I had become interested in creating art built solely with ideas surrounding how different cultures have combined over the centuries and how different ideas have shaped the landscape we now live in.”
Each piece in the new collection is named after a place, somewhere Sam had visited whilst ultimately on the way to somewhere else. An historic landscape, Sam explains, “I wanted to recognise the landscape as it may have been when various people have settled there… I try and visit each place and explore the landscape and local myth and heritage, then given an artistic representation for each piece I produce.”
Sam’s work is shaped by fire, he burns and bashes raw materials onto sheet metal in order to create a blend of colour and shapes. “Fire is the lifeblood behind the work” he tells me, “it give the work its soul and its spirit. It shapes the colours I apply and makes each piece individual.”
Each colour has meaning too, the yellows in the series inspired by fields of corn and the harvest. The blues and greens inspired by how the weather changes the natural landscape. The sanded areas inspired by the shards of natural light blazing into a forest. The red is he says centered around the idea of being a “living beast opposed to change”. Drawing on contemporary fiction to illustrate his point, Richard Adams he says has this idea in Watership Down, “that the diggers turn up and destroy the warren, the earth turns to red with the bloodletting happening.”
Province is the new series of work by Sam Peacock and will be available via the Curious Duke Gallery. Sam Peacock was interviewed by Sinead Loftus over email on 4 February 2016. Click on the link to read an interview and feature on Sam Peacock prior to his Fractured show .