Matt Caines

Stone Carver ・ Sculptor ・ Teacher

News from the Dusty Workbench

As the weather has pounded down on the studio roof, Amanda and I have been working out our ideas for the forthcoming ‘Dark Tales’ exhibition at Lantarnam Grange at the end of March. For more information, have a look at

We are combining my antler and scrimshaw engraving with stitchwork panels to create free standing sculptures and wall hanging pieces. First up is a malevolent Scottish equestrian water spirit, The Kelpie, a beautiful horse that would lure passing travellers to their doom in the dark, dank waters. Nasty.

Work in progress, Kelpie

Work in progress, Kelpie 2014

Work in progress, Kelpie

Work in progress, Kelpie 2014

My stonecarving trundles along with a red soapstone carving that eventually will be a dancing woman with antler inlays and also a new mermaid in Carrara marble.

Work in progress, dancing woman in red soapstone.

Work in progress, dancing woman in red soapstone 2014

Work in progress, mermaid in Carrara marble

Work in progress, mermaid in Carrara marble 2014

Recent scrimshaw commissions include a Whale and Knife handles for the lovely ceramicist Bridget Drakeford.

Whale & Knife handles 2013

Whale & Knife handles 2013


1 March 2013

Arts Alive Auction coming up at the Angel Hotel on Friday 15th March. I have three sculptures and Amanda three necklaces in the auction.

Proceeds go to funding Arts Alive Community Arts programme. Have a look at the Arts Alive website.



Welcome to my blog and website. Here you’ll find news of weekly evening classes and special weekend workshops, images of new carvings, prints and other snippets of information concerning the world of stone, wood and bone.

Occasionally, I will blog about sources of inspiration or writers and artists who I’m looking at, and include images of things that I find relevant or moving.

I like to work using hand tools as much as I can and feel that the ongoing interaction with the material should dictate the direction of the carving. Even when one uses models as a starting point, there is still a journey with that particular piece of stuff which can take you to places that you never thought it would.

Whilst most of my work is stone based, I have recently started producing scrimshaw and bone and antler sculptures too. I only use shed antler and collect found bone. Recently I collaborated on a carving in Blue Whale bone and I would like to state that this was a piece found by Inuit local to that area of Arctic Canada.



‘Woodlander’ – 2010 Portland stone 30 x 30 x 5cm