No look back at the history of Peacock would be complete without mentioning our longest standing workshop user and as legend goes the first person to unlock the door to our printmaking workshop Frances Walker RSA, RSW. This certainly won’t be the last time we look at some of her work and this wasn’t the first work she made with us but it was the first exhibtion project we produced with an individual artist.

We’ve managed to find the brochure that accompanied the exhibition as well as some images of a few of the pieces in it. We even uncovered a few of them that we have for sale (although not at the prices listed here!) and they will be available when we’re back open to the public.

‘Finnish Suite by Frances Walker
1980, Prints & Drawings (Brochure).

‘Baltic Progress at Helsinki’ by Frances Walker
1980, Etching with Aquatint.

‘Pirjo’s Room’ by Frances Walker
1980, Lithograph.

‘The Deserted House’ by Frances Walker
1980, Lithograph and Screenprint.

Our 1996 book Peacock 21 has the following insight into this exhibtion:
“Perhaps the arttist who has been most involved with Peacock Printmakers from the earliest Board of Management through chairing the organisation during a particularly difficult period, is Frances Walker. She has been a regular user making countless etchings, monoprints and collographs. Her many collaborations with staff printers have extended the technical repertoire in each department through testing combinations of line and texture. All her many exhibitions in the last fifteen years have featured a substantial print element and she has always demonstrated a very personal involvement in all stages of production. It was most fitting that Frances was chosen to feature in the first exhibition project that Peacock was to produce with an individual artist. The Finnish Suite was the result of an extended visit to Finland on a Gillies bursary from the Royal Scottish Academy. Two etchings, a screenprint and six lithographs resulted as well as additional unique proofs. The lithographs were particularly succesful, relying on Frances’s mastery of drawing. Although some have touches of screenprinted colour and one is printed from two blacks from different stones the overall impression is of fully toned drawings on a wonderfully sympathetic range of softly coloured hand-made papers from Barcham Green. In these prints Frances fully exploits the unique possibilities offered by a range of drawing techniques on lithographic limestone. Crayons are used along with pen and ink and particularly the restrained use of blades to scrape back the drawing allowing negative lines to enliven tonal passages. This project marked the start of a most fruitful collaboration between Frances and lithographer Stewart Cordiner.”