Major exhibition of the art works of the late North-East artist John Peace

09 November 2021

The Groyne
The Groyne by John Peace © Estate of John Peace

This November a major exhibition of the art works of the late John Peace, a leading artist in the North East, will open at South Shields Museum & Art Gallery.  

The exhibition entitled Tyne & Tide opens on 13 November 2021 and will showcase around 80 works all drawn and painted throughout the North-East and spanning more than six decades of Peace’s life.  

Peace studied at the South Shields School of Art from 1949-51, then at Leeds before gaining a place at the Slade School of Fine Art in London. He had a lifelong career in painting, as well as teaching art, and produced hundreds of paintings, many of which captured the landscape and aspects of social life in the changing region around him. It was a career deeply influenced and shaped by his time in South Shields.  

This exhibition, the first since Peace died in 2017, brings together a significant selection of some of his finest work. It focuses on landscapes, many depicting the region’s coast and rivers, as well as the area around Lemington, where he spent most of his life, and includes paintings of South Tyneside and Sunderland. Landscape was Peace’s main interest, but he also produced many paintings of other subjects and a section of the gallery will present examples of his portraits, still lifes and scenes of family life. 

On the night he died, John’s family determined to work together to honour his legacy. They set out with two aims: to protect and to promote his work, in the hope that it would become more widely known and enjoyed. 
Geoff Woodward, Museum Manager says “This exhibition provides a unique opportunity to see many of his best paintings, including those owned by the artist’s family, alongside a number of loans from private collectors.”  

South Shields Museum & Art Gallery holds extensive collections of local art portraying the area by local artists. The art collection dates from 1873 when the former Mechanics Institute building reopened as South Shields' first free public library. The Museum today occupies the whole of the former library building and the fine art collection consists of approximately 500 items including works by nationally recognised artists such as Charles Napier Hemy ('The Last Boat In'), Thomas Sidney Cooper, ('The Approaching Storm') and Harold Harvey ('Blackberrying').  

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