George Petrides, who lives and works in New York City and Athens, Greece, creates sculpture, including oversize heads (for which he is best known), figurative works, sculptures of animals, and occasionally strictly abstract sculptures - in sizes ranging from a few inches to three times lifesize. Born and partially raised in Greece, he is steeped in ancient Greek sculpture and the later works that were influenced by it (Donatello, Michelangelo, Rodin, Maillol, et al.). Furthermore, modernist sculptors of the mid 20th century such as Giacometti and contemporary sculptors who reference ancient Greek sculpture such as Ray and Bhabha have played an important role in his work.
His primary artistic interest is in the human experience in the form of the body and the head, exploring the beauty and the imperfection of people and of life.
His creative process is of his own invention and can be described as having four stages, with the first and last stage being relatively traditional and the intermediate stages being contemporary, taking advantage of current technology and materials. Specifically, the first stage often involves hand modelling in traditional clay, often using a life model and often making reference to a work that is part of the Western art historical canon. The second stage commences when this model is scanned, and the digital file is imported into a computer, where the model is manipulated and often enlarged, and then printed in 3D using materials such as plastic, or CNC milled in heavy foam, in sizes that can be up to three times lifesize. The third stage is once again manual, where he reworks the piece using power tools and construction materials, until the form achieves its final shape. Finally, the fourth stage is once again traditional, with the piece cast in bronze using the same lost-wax methods that were used by the ancient Greeks, with expressive patinas applied by hand and torch.
Growing up in a family of artists and business people, he made and studied art through college, then took a detour to Wall Street where he worked in investment banking while studying and made art part-time. For over 20 years, off and on, he took drawing, painting and sculpture classes at the New York Studio School (whose famous students include Christopher Wool and Cecily Brown), at the Art Students League, and at the Academie de la Grande Chaumière in Paris. In 2017 he dedicated himself to making art full time. He has had solo shows in Dubai, Monaco, Mykonos, Southampton NY, Washington DC; he has participated in two artist or group shows in additional venues. In 2022 he is unveiling his first public commissions, including a large outdoor sculpture.