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St Thomas Becket, Fairfield, Kent

John Piper (1903-1992)



Watercolour with ink and bodycolour

14 x 19 inches

'A Century of British Art: 1945-2010', Chris Beetles Gallery, 5 October-6 November 2021, No 211

The tiny church of St Thomas Becket stands isolated on Romney Marsh, the village that it served having long since disappeared. It was originally constructed in the twelfth century of a wooden frame and walls of wattle and daub. Then, in the eighteenth century, the walls were rebuilt in brick, and the interior transformed by a triple-decker pulpit and box pews, all painted in white. John Piper was greatly drawn to this space, which seems to combine the architectural and the organic, and included a watercolour of it in his book on Romney Marsh, which was published as a King Penguin in 1950.

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