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Richard Hunt

(1935)

Sculptor Richard Howard Hunt was born on September 12, 1935 in Chicago and raised there. Most of his work is abstract, suggesting recognizable human and natural forms. Hunt describes his work as, "the reconciliation of the organic and the industrial."

Hunt began in his teens, modeling in clay and carving in his bedroom at home. He later created a studio in the basement of his father's barbershop. Intrigued by metalwork at the African collection of Chicago's Field Museum of Natural History, where his mother, a librarian, frequently took him. Working in a zoological lab at the University of Chicago contributed to his fascination with animal and insect forms.

Hunt attended the Art Institute of Chicago from 1953 to 1957 focused on sculpture especially welding, and he studied lithography. Hunt was exposed to the work of the Sculptors Julio Gonzales and David Smith, to whom he has attributed inspiration to use direct-metal techniques to transform steel, aluminum, copper, and bronze into sculpture. The welding torch being his mallet and chisel, and his materials, which included found objects, garbage and auto parts found on industrial sites that he transformed into plant-like and insect-like forms. By 1960, Hunt had become a major open-form, direct-metal sculptor.


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