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Print - The Metro Project: St Peter's Chruch, Monkwearmouth

The Metro Project: St Peter's Chruch, Monkwearmouth

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    London (made)

  • Date:

    2004 (printed)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Paynter, Hilary, born 1943 (artist)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    paper and wood engraving

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level C, case GG, shelf 149, box C

In wood engraving, a design is drawn onto the surface of a block of polished hard wood such as box. Fine tools are used to remove those parts of the design that are to print white leaving behind a tracery of lines and shapes in relief. These are inked with a sticky ink, stiff enough to prevent it from falling into the hollows and an impression is taken using hand pressure or a press.

For this image of St Peter's, a Saxon church built in 674, Paynter took pains to render with accuracy the scale and disposition of the stones of the building. It forms part of Paynter's magnificent series commissioned by Tyne & Wear transport company, Nexus, to commemorate Thomas Bewick's 250th anniversary. Paynter conceived the series as a set of Japanese screens engraving her designs on eleven large blocks measuring about 20cm in height and three half-blocks. These were englarged up to two metres high and screen-printed on to 32 vitreous enamel panels stretching 22 metres, for installation in Newcastle Central Station. Paynter completed the entire project in eight months by working on several blocks concurrently.

Paynter's work shows impeccable technique and an exceptional creative range. It features dramatic landscapes, coastlines and buildings rich in heritage as well as gentler pastoral scenes. It includes more personal observations within her home and of her children, private and intimate commissions for bookplates and Christmas cards, and illustrations for private press. Perhaps her greatest contribution to the medium is represented by her social and political commentaries and works that address psychological issues related to daily life. Paynter became Secretary and later Chair of the reformed Society of Wood Engravers in the 1980s and has been instrumental in the resurgence of wood engraving as a medium. In 2006, she became President of the Society of Painter-Printmakers in recognition of her outstanding contribution to printmaking.

Physical description

Wood engraving inscribed with edition number, title and signature in pencil.

Place of Origin

London (made)


2004 (printed)


Paynter, Hilary, born 1943 (artist)

Materials and Techniques

paper and wood engraving

Marks and inscriptions

'2/60, St Peter's Church, Hilary Paynter'


Height: 15 cm image, Width: 5.5 cm image

Descriptive line

Wood engraving, The Metro Project: St Peter's Church, Monkwearmouth, Hilary Paynter, 2004

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Paynter, Hilary, Full Circle: Hilary Paynter, Wood Engravings, Woodend Publishing, 2010, pg 167, cat 2.


Paper; Printing ink


Wood engraving




Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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