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Peter Howson (1958-)

Aliases: Peter Howson Obe

Professions: Painter

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  • - Peter Howson , b. 1958 The Three Faces of Eve, a triptych each acrylic on canvas, unframed

  • Peter Howson (b. 1958)

  • PETER HOWSON B. 1958

  • Peter Howson , The Temptation of St. Anthony

Peter Howson Biography

Peter Howson OBE was born in London. His family moved to Prestwick, Ayrshire when he was four years old. As a young adult he served as an infantry soldier in the Royal Highland Fusiliers. He left the military to study art at the Glasgow School of Art between 1975 and 1977. There Howson met and worked alongside figurative artists Adrian Wiszniewski, Steven Campbell and Ken Currie. In 1979 he returned to complete a Masters degree. In 1982 he was awarded the Artist in Residence at the University of St. Andrews as well as part-time tutor for the Glasgow School of Art.

Howson’s early works depicted heavily muscular masculine working class men. As an official war artist in 1993 for the Bosnian civil war he produced his most shocking and controversial paintings that depicted atrocities of the time. In particular, a canvas entitled "Croatian and Muslim" which two men raping a woman while pushing her head into a lavatory aroused controversy, as did other images of sexual violence and other brutality. He portrayed brawls, drunken and deformed or disturbed men and women of lower social groups in broadly brushed and dramatically illuminated, often shocking compositions.

In more recent years his paintings have displayed strong religious themes that some claim are linked to his conversion to Christianity after treatment for his alcoholism and drug addiction in 2000. His works have gained broad exposure through a British postage stamp of 1998 and for album covers for records. During recent years Howson has completed a commission for the renovated St. Andrew’s Cathedral in Glasgow. It depicts the martyrdom of St. John Ogilvie.

He was awarded the Henry Moore Foundation Prize in 1988 and the Lord Provost’s Medal, Glasgow in 1995. In 1996 Howson was awarded Doctor of Letters Honoras Causa, University of Strathclyde.

The initials OBE that follow Howson’s name indicate that he was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire. This took place at the 2009 Birthday Honours.

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Peter Howson at Auction Now

  • Peter Howson (b.1958) Four Scottish Scenes, Peter  Howson, £180 Register to bid
  • PETER HOWSON (B. 1958)  Alpha & Omega  signed and dated 'Howson 2013' (lower right)  oil on canvas, unframed  72 1/2 x 60 1/4 in. (184-153 cm.)   Provenance:   with Flowers Gallery, London.    Artist's Resale Right may apply on this lot., Peter  Howson, £7,000 Register to bid

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