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Les Perhacs was born in 1940 in a vastly different Los Angeles. He explored the beaches and mountains from north to south into Baja California developing an affinity for animals of all kinds, particularly birds and sea life. He credits his Hungarian father, an engineer and inventor for early training in quality craftsmanship. Perhacs spent a year at Art Center School of Design before attending Pratt Institute in New York. It was there he studied under Willem & Elaine de Kooning, Buckminster Fuller, and Abstract Expressionist sculptor David Smith. His love of the open spaces of Southern California led him back to the University of Southern California where he studied Industrial Design and Architecture.
After college, Perhacs went to work as a model maker and inventor for the Toy Development Center in Los Angeles. He designed toys and games for Hasbro, Cragstan, Playskool, Mattel, Milton Bradley, A.C. Gilbert, and others as well as studio props for Universal Studios, Star Trek, and Man from UNCLE. Along with his job as an Industrial Designer and Inventor, Perhacs continued with his sculpture, exhibiting at several galleries in Southern California. While Perhacs enjoyed these pursuits, his longing to become more involved with nature again, and to be able to observe wildlife and do more sculpture, led him to leave Los Angeles for the woods of the Pacific Northwest.
In 1968, he purchased twelve acres on Washington’s Puget Sound where he built a three-story A-frame house, studio, shop and bronze foundry –all in the middle of a conifer forest. Over the next twenty years, he returned to the nature he loved and turned to sculpture in earnest. In 1988, Perhacs decided to return to his native Southern California and built a 1,500 square foot studio with bronze foundry where he continued his work in stone, steel and bronze.
Over the past 40 years, Perhacs’ works have been shown and collected internationally. He is in the permanent collections of the State Capitol Museum in Olympia, the Frye Art Museum in Seattle, and the Whatcom Museum in Bellingham. In 2000, Perhacs earned ‘Master Artist’ honors from the Artists of America. Public placements include the San Diego International Airport and Voorburg in The Netherlands.