Peter Wray RE
Peter Wray was trained as a painter, extending his practice into printmaking in the early 1970s, after being exposed to the richness and unique expressive power of the intaglio surface. With his background in painting, and being largely self-taught as a printmaker, the integration of painterly methodology into the graphic process was a natural development, and it is this combination of approach which gives his work its distinctive style:- "prints about painting, and paintings about prints". His influences are many: semi-religious symbols remembered from a Catholic childhood; the exquisite, accidental, sculptural imagery of the allotment garden; graffiti, and cave paintings enjoyed on travels abroad; the childhood fascination with the 'printed' images of fossils found in the shale tips near his home; early memories of coal-mining and, later, steelworks industries, where numbers, shapes, words and marks chalked on oxidizing steel panels held a mystery of meaning which continues to weave its spell for him.. Music has been a major influence: Irish traditional music in particular has made a deep and lasting impression, with its melodies providing a counterpoint for all kinds of musical adventures which underpin it and are held within it. He loves to explore the question, - what is important: the dominant melody, or those qualities which contain it or are contained within it? There is no such thing as "just a tune", as there is no such thing as "just a drawing". All of this is combined with a rejoicing in the qualities of materials and process and the 'joy' of making.