Fife artist with a gallery in his garden

You could be forgiven for thinking anyone with a woolly mammoth in the front garden, a huge spider crawling up the house or a galleon ship in the garden, was ‘bark-ing’ mad.

But far from it, as they are all the jaw-dropping, larger-than-life creations of Fife-based sculptor and artist Denis Carbonaro.

Captain of his own ship - Denis Carbonaro. Pics: George McLuskie

Captain of his own ship - Denis Carbonaro. Pics: George McLuskie

From his home in a quiet cul-de-sac in Dalgety Bay, Denis has become a local, if somewhat unconventional, celebrity, with residents keeping a keen eye on what he will be building next.

His impressive galleon ship, complete with rigging, sails and mast, set high in the trees at the back of his garden, is the artist’s most noticeable work to date, and the one that has motorist regularly pulling over to take a look.

Most amazing of all is the fact that every single item used to create the ship, is either a fallen branch from trees in nearby woods, or discarded and unwanted items that he has used to create his largest artwork so far.

“The galleon has taken a year to build but is far from finished,” Denis explained.

Denis Carbonaro in front of his amazing garden

Denis Carbonaro in front of his amazing garden

“I work on it for a while then move on to something else, I need to keep the mind fresh and anyway I’m bursting with new ideas.”

A design illustrator working in IT for the past 20 years, since coming to Scotland, the 48-year-old Sicilian born artist turned his back on the office job three years ago to pursue his interest in creative sculpture, passed on to him by his art-loving father.

“I work mainly with natural materials, recycling them to give them a new meaning as part of something bigger, that excites me,” he explains.

To illustrate his point he opens his newly finished ‘key-hole’ gate.

“Every part is salvaged and given a new life, it aims to draw people in,” he said. “Peering through a keyhole is exciting and offers a glimpse into the unknown, I’m very pleased with the end result.”

Denis finances his large-scale works by way of private commissions, but has big plans for the future and wants to make his creations accessible to the wider public.

“I’ve had visits from local groups and individuals and I welcome anyone wanting to come and see my creations up close,” he said.

But he dream, however, is to one day have a theme park which will be entitled ‘Bark Park’, full of these types of sculptures.

“It would be a fantasy land that will be geared to families and will be completely natural,” he said. “I’d love to find someone to make it a reality.”

His latest projects are a yeti creature, which he aims to have completed in time for the Edinburgh Fringe, and a moving crocodile made entirely from tree bark.

“People will be truly amazed when they see those,” Denis smiled.