Michael Disley Stonecarver
Working with stone has taught me many things over the last thirty years, but the most important of these is to just start carving...everything else will fall in to place.
It began with a wrong turning in a college in Chester as I walked in to an exhibition of life drawings from their art foundation course.
I met a man called Jack Shore who gave me a chance to enrol and start to look at the world in a new way.
From there I studied sculpture at Sunderland Polytechnic, and after three years as a self taught stone carver I went home to Chester.
I applied to a local stonemasonry firm and began carving 'properly' for the first time. I learned an enormous amount about the materials and techniques I should have been using all along, and spent three important years here making parts of churches and listed buildings.
In the mid 1980's public art had just really started to take off, and a few commissions came my way, followed by a few more.I was still a jobbing stonemason at this point and had moved to Yorkshire.
In the past 25 years I have made over a hundred public works all across the UK and Ireland. In 1993 I went to Africa to live and work with the Shona carvers in Zimbabwe. This gave me a taste for new horizons and since then I have travelled extensively to Japan, China, and India to discover new materials, techniques and cultures.
Carving beautiful natural stones, marbles and granite has been a real joy throughout my career and continues to be both a challenge and a pleasure.