Hugh Hayden’s practice considers the anthropomorphization of the natural world as a visceral lens for exploring the human condition. Hayden transforms familiar objects through a process of selection, carving and juxtaposing to challenge our perceptions of ourselves, others and the environment. Raised in Texas and trained as an architect, his work arises from a deep connection to nature and its organic materials. Hayden utilizes wood as his primary medium, frequently loaded with multi-layered histories in their origin, including objects as varied as discarded trunks, rare indigenous timbers, Christmas trees or souvenir African sculptures. From these he saws, sculpts and sands the wood, often combining disparate species, creating new composite forms that also reflect their complex cultural backgrounds. Crafting metaphors for human existence and past experience, Hayden’s work questions the stasis of social dynamics and asks the viewer to examine their place within an ever-shifting ecosystem. Hugh Hayden was born in Dallas, Texas in 1983 and lives and works in New York City. He holds an MFA from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Architecture from Cornell University. Hayden’s work has been the subject of numerous exhibitions in the United States and abroad. Recent solo exhibitions include public art installations, ‘Huff and a Puff’, at the deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum, Lincoln, MA (2023), and ‘Brier Patch’, at the Madison Square Park Conservancy in New York, NY, which later travelled to the North Carolina Museum of Art in Raleigh, NC, and Dumbarton Oaks Gardens in Washington, DC. Other solo institutional and gallery exhibitions include ‘Boogey Men’ at Institute of Contemporary Art Miami, Miami, FL, which travelled to the Blaffer Art Museum, Houston, TX; ‘Huey’, Lisson Gallery, New York, NY; ‘Hues’, C L E A R I N G, Brussels, Belgium; ‘Hugh Hayden: American Food’, Lisson Gallery, London, UK; ‘Hugh Hayden: Creation Myths’, Princeton University Art Museum, Princeton, NJ; and ‘Hugh Hayden’, White Columns, New York, NY. Recent group exhibitions include ‘Forest of Dreams: Contemporary Tree Sculpture’, Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, Grand Rapids, MI (2023) and ‘NGV Triennial’, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia (2023), as well as ‘Among the Trees’, Hayward Gallery, London, UK (2020). He is the recipient of residencies at Glenfiddich in Dufftown, Scotland (2014); Abrons Art Center and Socrates Sculpture Park (both 2012), and Lower Manhattan Cultural Council (2011). Hayden holds positions on advisory councils at Columbia University School of the Arts, Johnson Museum of Art at Cornell University and Cornell College of Architecture Art and Planning. His work is part of public collections at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY; Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), Los Angeles, CA; The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, NY, USA; Institute of Contemporary Art Miami, Miami, FL, USA; deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum, Lincoln, MA; Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University, Waltham, MA; Princeton University Art Museum, Princeton, NJ; and more.