Biography

Born in Oldham, Lancashire. Studied at Leicester College of Art, Chelsea School of Art and London University.

My work is characterised by a concern for abstraction and carefully constructed structures. Initial images are often drawn from landscape sources with themes such as ‘Traces’, ‘Earth Works’ or ‘Landmarks’, which explore marks left behind in nature. I am always more interested in fragments of the landscape and geological features rather than the bigger picture.

My practice explores the use of natural earth pigments. I source a range of ochres from the Clearwell Caves in the Forest of Dean where I have mined the raw ochre from 300 feet down the old iron ore mines. I also source other pigments, clays and slate dust on my travels both in the UK and abroad.

I generally use the pigments dry. They are rubbed into the surface of an acid free board and any structural lines are incised into the surface using a variety of tools. This enables the drawing to become a physical part of the image. The grooves collect pigment but can also be rubbed over to retain the underlining surface colour.

Other works explore the combination of textural qualities. Layers of gesso, plaster, pigment, (using an acrylic binder) and slate dust are applied to panels. Surfaces are layered, revealing colours beneath the surface by scraping, rubbing, digging and sanding.

Drawing is a regular part of my practice and is used as an act of discovery as well as a preparatory process towards finished works. The works themselves are marks I leave behind, and in that sense are traces where I have been in the creative process.

• Participated annually in hArt, Herefordshire Art Week Open Studio since  2002

•  hART  Steering Group Member 2004-2011

• Visual Arts Selection Panel Member, Courtyard Centre for the Arts, Hereford  .

• Member of the artists’ collective, Vulgar Earth

• Committee member for The Marches Makers Festival, Kington

An interview with artist Peter Horrocks about his work and use of earth pigments and ochres, specifically mined from Clearwell Caves.