Sculpture has Sheffield businessman seeing double

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Businessman Neil MacDonald is seeing double - after he successfully bid for a sculptor to create a piece in his own image.

Acclaimed artist Anthony Bennett has just unveiled the bust of former Master Cutler Neil after he won the prize - entitled ‘a unique portrait sculpture experience’ at a gala dinner held by Yorkshire Artspace last year.

Sheffield Theatres vice chairman Neil, who is also a board member of Sheffield-based Yorkshire Artspace, said: “Apart from anything else this was a really fascinating experience.

“It’s rather odd seeing a 3D mirror image of oneself but I feel honoured to be able to own a piece of Anthony’s work.

“By all accounts from family and friends he has really captured my likeness.”

“The Sheffield region has more practicing artists than anywhere outside London and Yorkshire Artspace has become a real hub for this community.

“As well as adding to Sheffield’s cultural credentials they also contribute to the region’s economy.”

The 2014 fundraising dinner raised £9,000 for the charity, which is based on Brown Street and provides affordable workspace for artists and craftspeople

Now the date for this year’s event has also been announced as July 8.

It will include a three course dinner, rooftop drinks and the chance to buy, bid for and win art from Yorkshire artists.

The sculpture of Neil has now inspired Anthony to to start a portraiture project of people from the Sheffield music scene that he has been influenced by .

They will be ‘expressionistic heads’ and possibly include Human League singer Phil Oakey and Arctic Monkey star Alex Turner.

Anthony, who has a studio at Yorkshire Artspace since 2009, said: “The hardest thing is to give a portrait life, and to communicate some of the character of the model.

“I tried to bring in tiny details that people who know Neil would recognise – overall I am really pleased.”

Dinner tickets will be on sale at www.artspace.org.uk.

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