Essex

Peaky Blinders sculpture on display at teenage artist's exhibition

Cardboard face sculpture Image copyright Leo Bignell
Image caption Leo Bignell created a sculpture of Tommy Shelby after watching Peaky Blinders on TV

A teenage artist's cardboard sculptures, including one of Peaky Blinders' Tommy Shelby, are to be displayed in a solo showcase for the first time.

Leo Bignell, 16, will display artworks, including a model of a Samurai and a Native American archer, in Colchester on Friday.

The young artist said he was "excited" to show his work to the public.

He was inspired to work with cardboard after a workshop at primary school.

Image caption Leo said he would be happy to show actor Cillian Murphy his Tommy Shelby sculpture

Leo, a pupil at St Joseph's College, Ipswich, creates figures that are only a few inches high.

He said: "It started in primary school when we had a lady come in to do a workshop doing cardboard faces, so I have being doing it ever since then.

"It is something which I am quite comfortable with. I started doing it quite simply, but because I have been doing it for so long I have tried different things."

Of his sculpture of Tommy Shelby, he said: "It is the first portrait I have really done that's worked on that scale.

"It wasn't a big goal but I am glad it did turn out well, I think."

Image copyright Leo Bignell
Image caption A Samurai warrior is among Leo's sculptures
Image copyright Leo Bignell
Image caption Another of his sculptures is of a Native American archer

He said he would be happy to show his piece to Cillian Murphy, who plays Shelby in the BBC gangster drama, adding: "Yeah, definitely - any opportunity, I would do that."

Leo said he saw his future working with cardboard, although he did not want to limit himself.

Vicki Harvey, assistant principal of arts and academics at St Joseph's, said when she first met Leo she had thought: "Wow, we have a true artist on our hands."

Leo's work will be displayed at menswear store Turner's in Crouch Street, Colchester, until 18:00 GMT on Wednesday.

Image caption Leo sees his future as continuing to work with cardboard

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