PETER LAYTON Glassblower

Peter Layton is acknowledged as one of the finest glassmakers working today.

Born in Prague in 1937, Peter initially studied ceramics at the Central School of Art and Design, in London. The attraction of clay being its immediacy. In the 1960's glass making was not yet offered as a course in art colleges, and it was not until later while teaching at the university of Iowa that he first encountered glassblowing. He was so struck by this magical medium that he spent several years exploring and experimenting with its design and possibilities.

He was captivated by the immediacy of the glass making process, its versatility and pure beauty. In his own words "magical, mysterious and illusory (to) describe its extraordinary properties and the process by which it is formed. A mixture of the most common materials (sand, chalk and wood ash) can be transformed by fire into a unique transparent solid with marvellous optical qualities". * "a material with a life and will of its own, constantly in motion and requiring instant decisions its manipulation and control".*

His own creations have a clarity and freshness inspite of the numerous layers of interwoven colours - delicate flower petals reminiscent of watercolours, flecked strands of colour swirling around a vessel with dynamic movement or droplets like softly coloured rain dripping over simple, elegant forms.

In 1966 Peter Layton set up the London Glassblowing Workshop and joined in establishing the Glasshouse.

His work is widely exhibited and represented in major collections. Recently he has concentrated on large architectural commissions. He is recognised as a master of his art, and a teacher of international repute.

Taken from "Glass Art" by Peter Layton 1996 .


1937 Born Prague, formerly Czechoslovakia
1960-62 Bradford College of Art
1962-65 Central School of Art and Design
1972-80 Lecturer: Various Art Colleges in the USA and Britain
1976 Opened the London Glassblowing Workshop
1996 Publication o’Glass Art’ by A C Black in October

Public Collections include:

Liverpool Museum
Castle Museum, Nottingham
National Museum, Prague, Czech Republic
Victoria and Albert Museum, London, England
Broadfield House Glass Museum, West Midlands, England
Royal Scottish Museum, Edinburgh, Scotland
Gus Khrvstalny Glass Museum, Russia
International Glass Museum, Ebeltoft, Denmark
Glasgow Meseum
Norwich Museum and Art Gallery

Major Commissions include:

P&O ‘Dawn Princess’ (Sculptures)
P&O ‘Sun Princess’ (Sculptures)
Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, ‘Legend of the Seas’ (Sculptures)
Savoy Theatre (Lighting)
British Gas (Awards)
Water Sculpture, Private Collection
Kuwait National Assembly (Glass Panels)
London Docklands Development Corporation (Awards)