By George Hider
Recycled raw steel with lanolin
When working in an engineering environment, George discovered his ability to create sculptures from discarded scrap metal. He loves to capture the character of the animals which unwittingly model for him and every piece of metal is carefully formed and welded into place. His large sculptures are protected with lanolin from sheep’s wool, which allows them to weather naturally.
In their own words ...
For the last 18 years I have been working as a sculptor from my home in South Somerset. I create lifelike forms from recycled steel which is sourced locally. Every piece of recycled metal is carefully formed and welded into place and each sculpture is unique.
It makes me angry to see rubbish strewn along the side of the road, on pavements and under park benches. I pick it up and put it in the nearest bin or take it home in case it will come in useful one day. I don’t like to see waste of any kind. I was brought up to make do and mend. Fourteen years in the Territorial Army showed me how to improve self-sufficiency but I was always able to improvise in some way.
It was during the time I spent working in an engineering environment that I realised my ability to see a use for the metal bound for the scrap bin. By welding together pieces carefully chosen from this discarded steel, I began to create simple sculptural forms. Over the years I have developed this natural talent to make my sculptures increasingly more lifelike. I love to capture the character of the animals and birds which unwittingly model for me.
I have recently exhibited work at RHS Rosemoor, Stone Lane Gardens in Chagford, Fircroft Summer Exhibition in Albury Heath, Surrey and Somerset Arts Weeks. My small sculptures are lacquered, suitable for placing indoors and in the garden. Large sculptures are protected with lanolin, a natural product from sheep’s wool, which allows them to weather and take on a natural appearance.