Peter Greenaway’s Biography

He was born in New Port, in Wales on 5 April 1942. The family left Wales when he was three years-old and moved to Essex, England. Since his childhood he had an interest for painting and European cinema that later he developed.  Greenaway focused on filmmakers as Antonioni, Bergman, Hitchcock, Godard, Pasolini and Resnais. In 1962 he went to the Walthamstow College of Art  to study painting, even though his main objective was to become a painter, he also made his first short film: Death of Sentiment, filmed in four large cemeteries in London. Since 1965 he worked at the Central Office of Information (COI) of the British Film Institute, where he was film editor and afterwards director. There, Greenaway started a self-training process with the information of experimental cinema and documentaries to which he had access. His first works were made with simple resources since the investment came from his income as editor. He started making short films: Train and Tree (1966), Intervals (1969), followed Windows (1974) H is for House and Dear Phone (1976). In 1978 he filmed Water Wrackets, Vertical Features Remake and A walk through H. From the 80s forward he started making films like The Falls (1980) The Draughtsman’s Contract (1982) A Zed and two noughts (1985) The Belly of an Architect  (1987) Drowning by numbers (1988) and The Cook, The Thief, his Wife and her Lover (1989). In the 90s his works turned especially visuals as Prospero’s Books (1991) The Baby of Macôn (1993) The Pillow Book (1996) and 8 1/2 women (1999).

For the 21st century he has completed his ambitious project of three films The Tulse Luper Suitcases (2004) then Nightwatching (2007) and Rembrandt’s J’accuse (2008). Greenaway states that we have not seen cinema yet and that his ambition is to try to reinvent it.

Biography taken from: <; (25 July, 2011)


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