Layton, Peter (21 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 21: Comments on PL’s assistants including Louis Thompson, Hanne Enemark, Layne Rowe, Jochen Ott, Anthony Scala. Anthony Scala making video about cold working; videos of glassblowing available on youtube. Difficulty of finding assistants for the gallery. [06:54] Comments on PL mentoring assistants; PL taking on studio manager Bruce with little experience; new assistants encouraged to experiment. [12:27] Qualities of a good glass artist. Adriano Berengo as working to revitalise Italian glass in Murano by persuading established artists to work in glass, mentions Tony Cragg and Mona Hatoum. Problem of vanishing hand skills around the world. PL disliking distinction made between arts and crafts, reads from his book Glass Art. [23:09] Advice to younger glassmakers; advice not to run one’s own studio and to hire studio space because of expenses and ties. [29:37] How PL signs work; PL not always dating work. Challenge of promoting work; quotes Dale Chihuly saying that photograph is more important than the piece; PL’s work photographed by Ester Segarra. Remarks on PL’s books ‘Peter Layton and Friends’ and ‘Peter Layton Past and Present’ and ‘Glass Art’. Books as a useful to promote work; buyers of books; books given away to customers. PL’s ambition to revisit ‘Glass Art’ . Different contributors to PL’s books mentions essays from Dan Klein, Michael Robinson, Andy McConnell. PL’s plans for a further book for his 80th birthday. [41:41] Effect of the internet on promoting PL’s work; PL having online shop and videos on youtube; working on new website. Mailings as having got a lot cheaper as many more people contacted online. Pricing of work; time taken to make work and number of people. PL’s work as forming bulk of sales. [48:22] Work as not well archived and PL now planning to improve archiving as need photos for website and forthcoming exhibition and book. Comments on physical demands of glassblowing; elderly glass makers including Lino Tagliapietra and Pino Signoretti; studio glass having a DIY attitude but glass historically made as part of a team; PL making bigger and heavier work than has ever made . A lot of PL’s work also flattened forms. PL not now doing much actual glass blowing and now directing the team. High level of skill of PL’s team. PL as welcoming input of team and liking unexpected results. PL’s studio facility allowing team freedom in their work. PL’s responsibility to keep studio running. [01:01:21] Changes in world of studio glass since PL began; increase in quality of work made; quality of ancient glass. Creativity of studio glass movement, mentions New Glass Review. Comments on future of glass art in UK, mentions British Glass Biennale. Comments on customers buying sculptural glass. PL’s gallery as opening people’s eyes to possibilities of glass; PL’s emphasis on colour and painterly approach; limited display of types of glass at the gallery.

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