Regarded by many as a major contemporary religious artist, Peter Clare produces works of art that spring from a profound and essentially Christian experience of life. He has long developed a taste for telling stories visually in a way that deconstructs time and cross relates events. Such an approach is an important element in much of his work and contributes greatly to the vitality and richness of his paintings.
Peter Clare writes,
“Following major surgery for advanced bowel cancer, lying in the recovery ward, I was assailed by a persistent and terrifying vision of the face of evil. The vision lasted several days. Every time I closed my eyes to go to sleep it was there and; Oh I did so want to sleep. My family could see my terror but I realised that it was needful that I should be so exercised. I was being taken on a journey for my own good; a journey I needed to share with others. I was being given a mission. In the first instance it was a calling to write a book, but when the Dean of Liverpool Cathedral invited me to put on an exhibition of my work I naturally saw that as an opportunity to address the same subject using paintings created over the last forty years or so and to work on some new ones."
"The title I chose initially for both the book and the exhibition was ‘The Face of Evil’, but after discussions with others it seemed the title ‘Is Love Enough?’ was more appropriate. I don’t have answers to the problem of evil, but what was revealed to me in that vision was that evil could be identified as a ‘cold indifference to existence and above all to suffering’. I saw it as a cancer that each one of us has within us and if left unaddressed would destroy us. It is a deep and contagious infection that needs to be overcome. As I pondered, and I did a lot of pondering, I realised that a special kind of love was required, a love that I entitled ‘Christlove’, a love we are called to by Jesus, when, in St John Gospel, Chapter 13 verse 34, He gave a new commandment; ‘to love one another as He loves us’."
"This was the great gift I had been given by my vision and why I am perversely grateful to God for having had cancer. Evil is real, I had witnessed its trenchant reality, and it is deep rooted in the Creation and it demands our taking it seriously. The paintings that make up this exhibition seek to address that reality and to offer some hope that it can be overcome.”
To find out more about Peter Clare click here.
This exhibition is supported by Westhill Endowment (charity no: 1104736).