Peter Layton is one of the world’s most widely respected glass artists. He has influenced, encouraged and nurtured several of this country’s leading glassmakers and has inspired many more internationally. Now in his seventies, Peter remains extremely active and is regarded as the “grand old man of glass”.
As a child, Peter went to school in Bradford, where his aptitude as an artist was first recognised and which led to him becoming friends with David Hockney. After study at Bradford Art College and London’s Central School of Art and Design specialisins in ceramics, he was offered a teaching job in Iowa University’s ceramics department. It was there that he was introduced to working with glass, and became bewitched by the medium’s immediacy and spontaneity.
“Glass is extraordinarily seductive”, explains Peter, "Every piece is an adventure and you never know exactly what you have created until you open the kiln and see how a piece has turned out. I love that moment of surprise.”
On his return to Britain, he established his own small glass studio at Morar in the Highlands of Scotland, a Glass Department at Hornsey College of Art (Middlesex University) and, in 1976, the London Glassblowing Workshop in an old towage works on the Thames at Rotherhithe. In 2009 Peter’s London Glassblowing Studio and Gallery moved to much larger premises in Bermondsey.