This week we venture into yet another mode of expression by artist Scott McDermott by taking a closer
look at a particular series that transports the actual canvas into the art. There are four pieces with numerical titles on display at the SEAD Gallery, and this week we are looking at “Ten” since it is one of the artist’s favorites.
After some time painting what the customer wanted during his career, McDermott was looking for a way to create something abstract, something he wanted to paint. That’s when he serendipitously stumbled upon a wrecked car hood and saw art there. Bringing the crushed steel into the art by using it as a canvas was not only a way to create something abstract, but to extend the viewer’s time with the art, which is a personal mission of his. The material used is not immediately evident to a viewer, as they take in the layers of paint and geometric shapes before recognizing the salvage for what it is.
“Ten” is the largest of the four enamel on steel pieces currently in the gallery, and uses cool blue tones and dark shadows as a backdrop to pearlescent green orbs that seem to float, yet form a repeating pattern. It also has what is probably the most obvious indentation or “bang-up” among the former car hoods, which suddenly makes a person wonder what they are looking at. Interesting dialogues are sparked when viewers realize they are looking at some common object that has been through an obvious mishap, and is now hanging as an abstract form in front of them. The artist has been successful in prolonging the amount of time the viewer has interacted with the painting, something he intended to do from the beginning.