Peter Folkes: In Memorium

The school community remembered artist Peter Folkes, following his death earlier this week.  He was an outstanding artist and art teacher and he leaves a substantial body of work in numerous public and private collections. His love for the cubist and modernist art movements is clear in Folkes’ paintings but his work also seems to nod to the palette and style of the Camden Town Group.  His lovely paintings of everyday scenes are particularly reminiscent of Stanley Spencer’s work.  Mr Folkes was Senior Art Master (1950 – 1964) when King Edward’s was still a grammar school.

Headmaster, Julian Thould, said “We were very saddened to hear of the death of Peter Folkes, a former Head of Art at King Edward’s and a distinguished painter. His work is still proudly displayed in the School and other paintings can be found at Southampton Art Gallery. We extend our condolences to his family and friends.”

Graham Piggott, the current Head of Art at King Edward’s, commented: “Peter’s painting of the King Edward’s clock tower under scaffolding is a favourite of mine as I can imagine it being painted at the end of a teaching day and used to inform his own students about viewpoints and composition. His drawings are equally exquisite showing his eye for proportion and the delicacy of a drawn line.  In talking to Old Edwardians, it was also clear that Peter and the art rooms were a place of quiet humanity amongst the robustness of an all-boys city grammar school. His work will continue to be an inspiration for many more generations of King Edward’s students as will the premise that as art teachers we should also be practicing artists.”

The now annual Prep School Art Exhibition is named in his honour and Mr Folkes shared our delight in seeing how popular this event has proved to be.  The next exhibition will be held in March and we will remember him as we celebrate creativity amongst this generation of young students.