Peter draws on his talent to open gallery in home
Self-taught artist Peter Bunney has turned his house into an art gallery.
The 80-year-old former stone mason is putting nearly five decades of work up for sale by exhibiting it at his four-bedroomed home in Western Park, Leicester.
Peter, a former cartoonist at the Mercury, said: "I am knocking on a bit and can't take this stuff with me, so I felt the time was right to show it off.
"This is, in effect, a lifetime's work and I would like people to see it and maybe derive some kind of pleasure from it."
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Peter, who has two children and four grandchildren, is to display the 140 pieces of work in the front lounge, dining room, back bedroom, hall and kitchen.
Peter started an apprenticeship after leaving the Gateway School at the age of 14. He said: "The thought of painting or creating works of art was a million miles from my world then. My world was going to work to earn some money.
"The apprenticeship lasted seven years and after that my days were full of scaling up very high steeples doing stone work.
"I realised it was a young man's job and I knew I had to do something else."
Peter, who lives with his wife Sandy, 65, changed career and took up a job as a pollution officer with Leicester City Council.
He said: "It was slightly less dangerous than being hundreds of feet up and gave me more time to think about things.
"I had always liked drawing so I decided with my extra leisure time I would give it a go."
One day, a postcard of a the picturesque Cornish fishing village of Polperro landed on his doormat at home.
He said: "The postcard wasn't even for us but something seemed to be telling me that I should paint it.
"I painted the view in the postcard, then quickly passed it on to the rightful owner.
"Once I had done that painting, my life changed forever. I was hooked on art.
"It was such a release for me and a labour of love. I did stone carvings, wood carvings, ceramics and even sculptures.
"I let my imagination run riot and now I want to show what I have been up to all these years. It would be nice if people like my work but I just want to share it.
"If anyone wants to buy any of my exhibits then I am sure we can come to some sort of agreement."
Samantha Whelan, director of Pedestrian – a creative education charity which has a gallery in Rutland Street, Leicester – praised Peter's initiative.
She said: "This just shows it is never too late to get involved with art. It is great that this artist is displaying his work in such an innovative fashion."
The exhibition, which starts on March 1, is by invitation only.
Anyone who wants to see the exhibition can call Peter on 0116 285 8548 or e-mail him at: