Peter Heard 1939 - 2021
Peter very sadly passed away in February 2021. A regular exhibitor at John Noott Galleries for almost 20 years, with several fabulous solo shows in Broadway - we always knew we were going to have a lovely day when Peter (and his partner Mary) were there at the opening. Clients loved to meet the man behind the paintings - enigmatic, funny, passionate, on one hand larger-than-life but on the other - incredibly humble. A great family man who adored his children and grandchildren. And so very kind. We will miss him enormously ...... but what an amazing legacy he has left behind.
Born in 1939, Peter Heard was an artist whose passion for his subject clearly came from his previous profession, that of a civil engineer. His work is characterised by a fascination with structure and engineering, evident since he began painting back in the 1970s. Later work reflects an interest in country life: its events, characterful people and animals.
During his early career Peter Heard exhibited alongside Beryl Cook and Martin Leman at London’s Portal Gallery, with five sell-out exhibitions to his credit. His work is widely collected in Britain and America with celebrity clientele such as Jackie Collins and Pink Floyd’s Nick Mason owning collections of originals.
In the mid 1990s Peter Heard took a dramatic change of direction, following what he refers to as a life-changing visit to America’s East Coast. It was here he saw the giant lighthouses of North Carolina’s Outer Banks. Peter Heard describes this as ‘simply unbelievable’ experience and one that has led him to start a collection of lighthouse paintings – ‘a magnificent obsession’. This now exceeds fifty and is probably the most extensive in the world.
Peter says: My paintings are idiosyncratic, in my own oeuvre and with a strong personal colour palette that could add up to repetition. However, why change a winning formula? Some artists constantly change their imagery, genre, palette, technique and medium – how they do this is beyond me! It’s taken me forty years to make paintings in my own acrylic way. Technically, I search for unattainable flawlessness. A mantra which is always with me is this quote from deep in my journals, 'Develop an infallible technique and put yourself at the mercy of inspiration'. I wish I knew where it came from!