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Ode to a portrait
A portrait inspires a poet
A PORTRAIT of the artist as a young man has inspired a visitor to an exhibition in Dorchester to create his own work of art - a poem.

The exhibition at Dorset County Museum is a retrospective of the work of Peter Thursby, who has carved out an impressive reputation as one of the country's leading sculptors.

His large-scale commissions are found in Dallas, London and his native Exeter.

But his smaller work including paintings, drawings and sculptures is at the museum until March 15 and it was there that visitor Harry Guest felt moved to write a poem based on a self-portrait by Thursby aged just 18 and the way the work of the following decade emerged.

Harry, a published poet, has known Peter and his work for about 30 years. He and his wife stayed at the Wessex Royale during their stay in Dorchester and it was there that he drafted and redrafted his poem after visiting the museum and being so excited by the exhibition.

He said: 'It was that wonderful early self-portrait which particularly triggered the poem off, plus the thought that he at 18 knew exactly what he wanted to do but couldn't know exactly what form it might eventually take.' advertisement

He added: 'The Retrosepctive was stunningly effective and most beautifully displayed. Dorset County Museum deserves endless praise.'

Text and image by Newsquest Media

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