One of the major introductions into ceramics was digging Neolithic iron age and Roman samien shards on archaeological digs somewhere in Wales while trying to survive as an art student in Birmingham.
Peter has always been interested in the history of ceramics – why and how ‘things’ are made of clay. This interest was extended after he spent several years travelling through Africa working with various tribes and village potters and being intrigued how, with limited technology and basic tools, they were able to get such exquisite, beautiful surfaces.
"I found the same inherent skills in India, Nepal Japan and New Mexico. I tried to adopt the ideas picked up from my travels in my own work. By building up layers of textured clay combined with burnishing and polishing of surfaces, trying to achieve opposites of rough and smooth."
Working on large scale ceramic forms which have been placed in the landscape, Peter's main aim is that the work should not compete with the landscape, but evolve within the environment. With this in mind he has introduced other minerals into the Raku ceramic surface such as iron and copper. With the elements of time and erosion, the individual piece takes on its own developing surface.
"In practice I go by the set of my pants. I have always worked this way, not going by any particular rules or methods. It’s the material that is in charge and it will only let you make what it wants. It is my job to push it to its limits and somehow an equilibrium is made between maker and material."