Peter Dowden

Peter was born in Dumfries and lived most of his life in the Scottish borders until moving to Dalbeattie in 1981.

A trained dry stone dyker, Peter turned to sculpture, being fascinated by the variety of local stone in Dumfries and Galloway quarries and the marks left by the ancients.

ĎI look at each piece of material and either see a suggestion inside of the stone which dictates itís own form. I sculpt using basic hand tools, though slow and labour intensive results in a freer feel for the piece.í

Always aware of his carbon footprint, Peter recycles materials from Locharbriggs quarry. These would be destined to be made into rubble or landfill.

Peterís influences come from his knowledge of nature and local history, having spent most of his working life outdoors in the Galloway countryside. Peter has been inspired by the research carried out by George Bain of Celtic art.

He lists Epstein as one of his gurus. There is also a deeply spiritual side to Peterís work revealing his interest in Easternism.

Peterís work can be seen all over Scotland. He is regularly commissioned to produce site specific works. Peter has a strong sense of community and works alongside local groups such the allotments, Day Care centre and schools, valuing the importance of continuing old craft skills.

Peter was chosen to participate in Kirkcudbright Craft trails during 2009 and 2010. Peter helped to launch the Big Art for Kirkcudbright project, the precursor to the Kirkcudbright Sculpture Symposium 2010.

Currently Peter is working on a commission, ĎSleeping Jesusí, and garden seating in Dalbeattie, incorporating books as seats, showcasing the variety of local stone and its inherent properties.

Selected works

Mayan pyramid   Wickerman festival 2001
Lit Altar piece   Life Festival Tullamore Southern Ireland 2004
Dry stone construction   Auchencairn Play park 2005
Stage frontage   Eden Festival 2008
Kairn(permanent installation)  Raehills Estate 2009
Kairn/Stupa   allotments Dalbeattie 2010

Future Projects

Site specific and workshops   Kirkconnel allotments 2011
Stone Carving workshops   Dalbeattie High School 2011
Dry stone dyking   Dalbeattie allotments 2011
With High School: Granite Gift for Malawi   Dalbeattie Community Council 20.04.11
Public Art Kairn/Stupa   Dalbeattie Community Council 2011