DescriptionMark Stonestreet was born in Singapore in 1971. He studied Sculpture at Newcastle Polytechnic after which he travelled extensively in Europe, Asia and beyond, discovering mediums and methods that would become the foundation of his creative process.
In 2004 he discovered Mamallapuram in India, a village of over 200 stone carving workshops, the next four years were spent working and living amongst the traditional Dravidian temple carvers of south India. Predominately working in granite, the artisans of Mamallapuram create carvings for Hindu temples all over the world.
“ It was a 6 month trip to investigate a global centre of stone carving, gain the knowledge to carve granite and to experience how another culture approaches this medium. It soon became something more, the advantages of life with out distractions immersed in a culture devoted to the art of stone carving was addictive, it set my working ethos for my practice, and its a place I return to as often as I can, the beautiful stone, a granite/ basalt has become a regular medium for my work”
Returning to Europe Mark found work on restoration projects on Gothic buildings in Switzerland, ran international exchanges and international sculpture symposiums, in partnership with the Indian studio, whilst establishing his studio in the south of the UK.
His UK studio has become a place of learning for many interested in stone carving, facilitating recently qualified carvers with free studio space, tools and support, creating a space for professional carvers to create larger scale carvings, enabling members of the general public to experience the craft and create projects in stone as well as teaching introduction courses in schools.
His works can be found through out Europe and Asia in both private and public collections.
“ My works take their inspiration from nature, from the detail, the minute, the passing moments that happen a million times a day, the rain drop impacting on the puddle, the curl of an autumn leaf, these and many others give me the line and form, with which I manipulate, exaggerate, and simplify.
The works are depicting an adventure in line and form, no one work represents any type of conclusion, just a pause in a series of what ifs, utilising scale, texture and I hope, beauty, to entice and seduce the viewer to join me on this exhilarating journey”
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