Welcome to Sculpture in Rust

I'm Andy Caple and I make art from decay. Created from the remnants of an industrial past, neglected and rusted old metal objects are brought back to us, revealing themselves in new and beautiful ways. This is a journey through history, through the hands of the first maker, through the imagination, and into the contemporary world. You can see images of my finished sculptures and the creative process on my Gallery page.
You can find out more about me and my Sculptures in Rust below.

The process begins in the landscape; pieces of iron, large and small, round and square, thin and thick, abandoned and long past the task for which they were created, lifted from the grass and mud of the fells and woods of the Lake District and taken home.

Back at my workshop I want to stop the process of decay. I bring the found object into the dry. I scrub it and degrease it, then there is a pause in the process; a period of waiting. I live with it until it shouts at me. Then when we are both ready, I use my tools, skill and judgement to give it a new identity. I invest my work with a high degree of emotional awareness that this old, fragmenting piece of red rust had one life and will now find another. The finishing and presenting is vital and when done the piece is set into a base of stone or precisely cut and polished wood.

What I make is a felt response to the object that I found; I believe that the things I make are real and alive, unique, with a personality of their own. I am proud to send them out into the world with a new dignity.


Art from Decay

My sculpture is based on nature’s decomposition of resistant materials and explores the shape, form, colours and textures produced with years of exposure to the elements. I contrast metal’s rotting appearance with its polished and finished state, finely worked bases or other contrasting materials. Each piece of work can be appreciated from a distance as an overall form, close up revealing colours and textures and through magnification revealing miniature worlds of mountains and valleys.
Without nature my work would not be possible.

Sculptures are for sale, commissions taken, and generous gifts of decomposition gratefully accepted. I love the idea of a collaborative way of working - bring me interesting objects and let me transform them and give them a new life as a Sculpture in Rust. To get in touch you can send me a message or phone me, see below for details.

See my   Gallery page for examples of my sculptural work. If you'd like to know more about the process of transformation, there's a link to a recent article below.

view a recent on-line article about my work

About Me

I have spent most of my working life in the education of young people, using the workshop as principal tool in gifting the realisation that there are alternative means to success other than the normal measurements of academia.

My spare time has been spent in building, construction and the restoring of classic cars in particular, and working with my hands in general. I have no formal art education but blame my love of unusual art on my art teacher, Paul, who encouraged me from the age of 11 to use my practical gifts to create. My friendship with Paul lasted some 45 years though sadly not into retirement. He never saw my work but was (and still is) a major influence in the following of a similarly unusual pathway.

Moving to the lakes in retirement gave me the time and inspiration to work with rust and forage for materials from the tip of Cornwall, where my children live, to the hills and industry of Cumbria.