Carshalton, Surrey, UK
|Education||Croydon College of Art, Saint Martin's School of Art|
|Notable work(s)||"Oddball", "The Conquest of Happiness"|
Peter Hide (born 1944, Carshalton, Surrey) is an English born abstract sculptor. A one-time pupil of Sir Anthony Caro, Hide is best known for upright, large-scale welded sculptures made of heavy, rusted industrial scrap steel.
Peter Hide works in the Modernist assembled sculpture tradition begun by Pablo Picasso and continued by David Smith and Anthony Caro, but with an emphasis on weight and pressure unlike his artistic forebears. Like his mentor Caro, Hide's sculptures forsake the plinth, but against Caro's open weightlessness, Hide reclaims mass and the monolith, connecting his work to inspirational sources in Auguste Rodin and Brâncuși. "I think a lot of sculptors," Hide says, "especially those who were taught by Tony Caro, decided deliberately to move as far away as possible so as not to be seen as his disciples. The problem is that if you do that you move away from extremely fertile territory.
After studying with Caro at Saint Martin's School of Art, and working part-time for him as an assistant, Hide set up studio at Stockwell Depot in 1967, where he went on to organize a series of important exhibitions throughout the 70s, sponsored by the Arts Council of Great Britain. From 1971-78, Hide taught sculpture at Saint Martin's. Accepting a position at the University of Alberta in 1977, Hide decided to move far from the London art scene, to the frontier Canadian prairie city of Edmonton, giving him the freedom to develop his work on his own terms.
In 1998, the Edmonton Art Gallery held a 25-year retrospective of his work, "Peter Hide in Context", and in 2008, the North Edmonton Sculpture Workshop organized a special exhibition of five large works by Hide on the sculpture terrace at the Royal Alberta Museum, "Peter Hide @ The RAM".
Hide currently makes his home in Edmonton, Alberta, where he is married to painter Hilary Prince, and teaches as Professor and Head of the Sculpture Department at the University of Alberta. Peter Hide's art is represented in many important private and public collections throughout North America and Europe, including London's Tate Gallery. Some of Hide's students from the University of Alberta have gone on to work in the medium of welded steel sculpture with a 21st-century post-postmodernist aesthetic sensibility. These artists include Andrew French, Linda Maines, Ryan McCourt, Royden Mills, Robert Willms, and Tanya Wood.