Ben carving out reputation with his ingrained gift

Ben Loughrill's sculptures give new life to dead wood, and they're all the more amazing as they are carved using a chainsaw, Rachel Banham.

Ben Loughrill admits that he still struggles when he hears himself described as an artist.

Yet, looking at the wood sculptures he creates, it's clear that he is an artist – and a successful one at that.

At his base near Halesworth, Ben is surrounded by wood sculptures he has created, including hares, dogs and bears. His surroundings are a tribute to his work, and an insight into how something as powerful as a chainsaw can be used to create beautifully refined pieces of art.

Ben discovered his artistic talent quite by chance, when he had a go while working as a roofer in Cornwall 10 years ago.

With a host of commissioned sculptures to his name, Ben says he is most proud of the work he has on display at Thetford Forest. He has his second artist residency there this year, meaning he will do various chainsaw-carving demonstrations.

'I just like to bring dead bits of wood back to life,' he says.

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To find out more about how Ben discovered his special talent, and more pictures, see the Sunday supplement in Saturday's bumper EDP.

Ben will be demonstrating his chainsaw carving at High Lodge, Thetford Forest, on May 28 and 29, July 30 and 31 and September 3 and 4, 2011.

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