Peter Collis (b.1929-2012)

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Peter Collis

Peter Collis


Peter Collis paints many subjects but those to which he returns constantly are landscapes and still life. There are many painterly allusions in his work: Morandi and Permeke among them – and of course his revered Cezanne to whom he refers most often. Peter is very much his own man and what emerges from his work is the sheer exuberance in the handling of pigment. His palette with its generous swirls of prussian blue and scarlet lake among others, becomes disciplined as the paint is placed on canvas. His dictum “scrape back” may well account for the sparkle of some passages of his work, as different layers of pigment are exposed to view. Peter Collis is undoubtedly a painter of subtlety and technical virtuosity.

John Coyle R.H.A.

Born in England in 1929 and trained at Epsom College of Art, Peter Collis moved to Ireland in the mid-Sixties as a sales agent for Shell Oil, a job which took him across Ireland and provided enough spare time to resume painting. Over the next forty years, initially working part time and then professionally, Collis developed a deep sense of the structure and poetry of the Irish landscape his paintings capturing the inherent drama of the weather and the dark, muted colours of the terrain. Working from his makeshift studio in the back of a 4×4, Peter would often return to the same points on the Dun Laoghaire coast and, in particular, the Sugarloaf in County Wicklow, examining the subjects afresh and developing his technical skill as a painter. During the 1980’s his work achieved a growing following amongst Irish collectors leading to several exhibitions in Dublin and from the 1990’s with John Martin Gallery in London where he held several, highly successful exhibitions. In 1994 he was elected a full member of the Royal Hibernian Academy and became a regular exhibitor there for the rest of is life, and working as Treasurer. Charming, elegant and always immaculately well dressed, Peter Collis remained the quintessential English gentleman, but as an artist, his inspiration, his heart and his temperament found a connection deep within the landscape of his adopted homeland.  Ireland taught him his painting and it will be as an Irish painter that he will always be remembered.


<i>Fruit and Blue Vase</i> Oil on canvas 8 x 10 ins, (20.32 x 25.40 cms)
<i>Medical Bottles and Fruit</i> Oil on canvas 8 x 10 ins, (20.32 x 25.40 cms)
<i>Still Life with Black Vase</i> Oil on canvas 14 x 17 ins, (35.56 x 43.18 cms)
<i>Still Life with White Plate</i> Oil on canvas 13 x 16 ins, (33.02 x 40.64 cms)
<i>Landscape Study with Blue Sky</i> Conté On paper 5¾ x 7 ins, (14.61 x 17.78 cms)


Solo Exhibitions

2012 Paintings from the Last Thirty Years, John Martin of London
2012 Peppercanister Gallery, Dublin
2006 Gallery, Dublin
2004 Recent Paintings, John Martin of London
2002 Gallery, Dublin
2001 2001, John Martin of London
1999 Martin of London
Gallery, Dublin
1997 Gallery, Dublin
1996 Martin of London
1995 Gallery, Dalkey, Co Dublin
1994 Gallery, Cheltenham
1993 Gallery, Sligo
1992 Gallery, Cheltenham
1991 Gallery, London
1990 Gallery, Longford
1989 Gallery, Longford
1988 Gallery, Dublin
Fine Art, Newcastle, Co Down
1987 Gallery, Dublin
1986 Fine Art, Newcastle, Co Down
Gallery, Longford
1984 Gallery, Dublin
1983 Gallery, Dublin
1981 Gallery, Dublin
1979 Gallery, Dublin
1977 Gallery, Dublin
1975 Gallery, Dublin

Group Exhibitions

Royal Hibernian Academy, Dublin
Royal Academy, London
John Martin of London
Irish Art, Concept Gallery, Pittsburgh, USA
Royal Society of Portrait Painters, London
United Society of Artists, London
Represented IrelAND, Expo ’92, Seville
Hendricks Gallery, New York, USA
Independent Artists, Dublin
Ulster Arts Club
Cork Arts Society
Tulfarris Gallery, Wicklow
Munster Fine Art Exhibition
Kenny Gallery, Galway
Celebration of the Bog, Touring Exhibition; Carroll Gallery,
IMMA, Glebe AND Butler Galleries
Claremorris Open Exhibition
United Arts Club Group
Taylor Galleries, Dublin
Dolan Moore Gallery
Trinity Gallery, London
Narrow Water Gallery, N. Ireland
Swift Gallery, N. Ireland
James Gallery, Dalkey
Aer Rianta Arts Festival
Claremorris Gallery
Jorgensen Fine Art, Dublin
Boyle Arts Festival
George Moore Festival