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I am originally from the remote Scottish island of Shetland, it's nature and wildness and Scandinavian culture, a great influence on my work however, my professional background didn't start in art.  As many young men were in Shetland, I was drawn to the sea and joined the Merchant navy cadet programme at 16 years old.  Now 28, I served 12 years as an officer in the Merchant Navy which is the next largest influence on my work.  I have since left the Merchant Navy and am working full time within the arts. 

ART  Bravado.  Bronze Ram.

Bravado is a stylised bronze sculpture of a ram, rearing back on it’s hind legs, ready to lock horns.

The name bravado is a challenge to the masculine mindset of needing to fight in order to “be a man”. I sculpted the ram to look strong and powerful. Unwilling to waiver. Its hind legs rooted to the ground. The sculpture is in a way, representative of the social pressures of bravado mentalities.

Now living in North Wales and originally from Shetland in the far north of Scotland, a ram seemed a natural subject for this sculpture.

ART  Deep in Grizzly Thought.

Deep in grizzly thought is a bronze impressionistic sculpture of a grizzly bear. Originally sculpted in plasterline, each individual piece of fur was carefully made and added before being moulded and cast in bronze.

The bears polished nose gives a stark contrast in texture and colour between the face and fur. On the bears fur, I carefully knocked back the black so that a glimmer of polished bronze would shine through on some of the tips.

ART  Paternal Instinct.  Bronze.

Paternal Instinct is a heavily stylised sculpture showing an adult penguin and it’s young.

This solid bronze sculpture is patinated in a blue green, mottled affect to replicate the icy conditions of the Antarctic.
When I sculpted this, I wanted the focus to be on the beaks of the two birds. The young penguin, with it’s head tilted right back looking up in admiration to it’s father. The father lovingly looking down.

I think love is such a universal emotion across all boarders and species. It allows us to relate to other people and animals. A primal instinct that we all have in common.

Bronze Limited Edition
Bronze Limited Edition
Bronze Limited Edition

I chose a hamadryas baboon as the subject for this sculpture for a couple of reasons. Firstly, I was struck by their huge, lion-like mane. Hamadryas baboons are extremely domineering which I tried to portray by making this baboon sculpture look slightly lion-like (king of the jungle).

I always like to draw comparisons when I sculpt animals, between them and humans. Male Hamadryas baboons are known for their aggressive and domineering nature towards the females of their species. This led me to thinking about the similarities in abusive human relationships. The face of this baboon has been well refined and looks quite regal. However as you turn the sculpture, it becomes more rough, less refined and more raw. As if what initially drew you in is vanishing as you interact with the piece.

For any inquiries please contact Michael and Sue on: raglethgallery@gmail.com