Layton, Peter (15 of 22) National Life Stories Collection: Crafts Lives

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  • Recording date

    2014-11-24, 2014-12-18, 2015-01-07, 2015-01-13, 2015-01-19, 2015-03-02, 2015-03-09, 2015-03-16, 2015-04-13

  • Recording locations

    Interviewee’s home in Worcester Park and studio in London

  • Interviewees

    Layton, Peter, 1937- (speaker, male)

  • Interviewers

    Cornford, Frances (speaker, female)

  • Abstract

    Part 15: Bart educated at Dulwich College; PL spending a lot of time with Bart; PL paying for Bart’s education. Finances as always a struggle but PL felt meant to struggle; division of finances; Bart’s career as a film and TV director. [13:41] Comments on parents and siblings; GL going to RADA and becoming a successful actor and writer and buying into Body Shop; VL getting MBE. [17:06] Commuting from Kent. PL’s parents moving to Muswell Hill; meeting on Friday night at parents. PL not keeping up with Jewish traditions; GL having three children and VL four; niece married to rapper Beardyman. [23:56] PL starting to take on architectural commissions during recession; PL landing commission to produce windows for new Kuwaiti parliament after the Gulf War. Developing modular style of building after glass pyramid made for Novy Bor; making water feature in similar style. [29:48] Working on panels for Kuwaiti parliament; challenges of work finances and timescales. Commission to make front of house lighting for Savoy Theatre; struggle to find lighting company who could fulfil brief and persuading company at Dudley Port to let PL and team work there. People as staying with PL’s studio, mentions Louis Thompson and Simon Moss (SM). Finding niche doing large atrium sculptures and other work on cruise liners. [44:51] Description of first cruise liner job for Legend of the Seas; cruise work stopping after 9/11. [51:40] Long description of making of piece for atrium ‘Janus’; finishing job on scaffolding by torchlight; also making wave water feature. [01:00:37] Sculpture made of steel and glass elements of water jet cut triangular pieces with fibre optic lights. Narrow escapes in installing pieces, mentions almost crushing SM’s hand. Taking on challenging jobs because needed money. Two sides of the business supporting each other. [01:09:09] Assistants doing tests without PL’s supervision; some people as preferring to work alone; PL preferring working with a team of people. Preferences of different people in the studio, mentions Layne Rowe and Louis Thompson. [01:14:10] Comments on showing at Chelsea Crafts Fair. PL not having much to do with the Crafts Council. Prices of work. Buyers of PL’s work. Selling seconds and what makes something a second. [01:24:01] Moving from Rotherhithe studio after council decided to develop land. Finding workshop in The Leathermarket, Bermondsey through Workspace and contact in school playground; Maddie Carragher of Workspace keen to support London Glassblowing. PL having both studio and large gallery space. London Glassblowing a showpiece for Workspace; Workspace supporting the studio. Difficulties of running a production studio.

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