Stephen Charlton | Sculptor
"I believe that animals can trigger different emotions and connections that we don’t think about until we’re confronted by them. I try to instil a smile inside to those who experience my work and for them to resonate with the energy of each animal character I create."
I simply love what I do. To create work that comes from within that expresses my emotions at any given time is a blessing to me. And the common thread that runs through my sculpture and paintings is the connection to nature. As a boy I spent many hours in all weathers in the countryside in Yorkshire observing insects and from this emerged my own inquisitive nature. To understand how a moth can camouflage itself against a tree or an ant colony strive, will always be a fascination to me. The same with my sculptures, I experience the feeling of joy and from this comes an animal character that has both wit and presence. To create a smile inside’ is a reflection to who I am inside and there seems no bounds to the stream of ideas or the energy to bring them to life.
Having shown my work in many prestigious surroundings and built relationships with my clients, it’s apparent to me that many others share the same childhood stories and fantasies of animal characters that play and frolic – igniting memories and their imagination that take them away from our busy, noisy world.
The opportunity to look into a garden and experience a mouse swinging with glee or a large hare offering his beloved a carrot filled with flowers is not only unusual but also tranquil and satisfying.
From my initial idea, the sculpture process entails meetings with clients, exploring locations, agreeing sizes and colours – and this is just the start. The ‘lost wax’ process is over 2,000 years old and is used for casting works of art around the world. My relationship with Castle Fine Arts foundry in Wales and Liverpool are exceptional in their quality of bronze casting and expertise in installations and project management.
Working in my studio within a brickworks is a great environment and then on to the foundry to cast each piece in bronze is equally enthralling. Seeing other sculptors works at various stages of completion makes me feel connected to a need for art that can be enjoyed by so many.
When I cast my bronze pieces, I limit them to only nine – so to retain their uniqueness and originality.
Once the nine pieces have been reached I break the mould. Speaking with my clients, they appreciate that only a small number are available and this – like most art, becomes more scarce.
I work in partnership with foundations, public authorities, landscape gardners and architects and for private clients around the world.
I tend not to place my work in galleries and enjoy the direct contact with clients and prospects, building a long term relationship.
If you have a specific project in mind and wish to explore a commission or to purchase what you see on my site, then please make contact with me and I would be happy to oblige.
Look at my commissioning page to learn more about my process.
1975-1979: York College of Arts
1979-2020: Designer and brand consultant
Present: Taking commissions, creating and exhibiting bronze garden sculpture.
Private Orders & Commissions
Mouse on Ball, Scotland
Owls, Hares & Swinging Mouse, France
Swinging Mouse Leicestershire
Mouse on Ball, The Netherlands
Mouse on Ball, Bath
Boxing Hares, Accountants in Coleshill
Basking Mouse and Boxing Hares, Scotland
Skating Mouse, Sussex
Mouse on Ball, European Sculpture Tour
Doddington Hall 2018
Marks Hall 2017
Chesham Waters Public Installation 2016/2020
The Grove Hotel 2012
Kenilworth Castle 2011
Enid Blyton Garden 2011
Estate, Devon 2011
Charlcote Park - National Trust 2010/13
Rococo Gardens 2010
Outside Art 2010
Llangollen, Wales 2010
Glazed Art, Trentham Gardens 2010
Where I fell in Love Gallery, Warwickshire 2010
Chelsea Flower Show, London 2009
Twycross Zoo 2009
Chelsea Flower Show, London 2008
Mill Dene Gardens 2004 & 2009
Where I fell in Love Gallery, Worcstershire 2008
Nature in Art 2007
Tatton Park 2007
The Gallery, Warwickshire 2006
Broomhill Sculpture Park 2006
Charlton House Hotel 2004
Helen Ley Centre
School Workshops & Demonstrations
The Grove Hotel, Watford
Coppice Primary School, Birmingham
Pinvin Primary School, Worcestershire
Wildlife Artist of the Year 2004