South Carolina-based assemblage artist Matt Wilson uses discarded metal – scraps, old tools, cutlery – to craft spectacular animal sculptures. But while his work certainly transforms the parts he uses, he deliberately ensures the viewer can still identify the original objects therein.
“The upcycled work I create is a testimony to the belief of conserving and appreciating our resources, so that the environment in which we live will continue to be an environment in which we desire to live. My goal as an artist is to make artwork unlike art people have seen, while at the same time recognizable in the identity of everyday materials.”
According to Charleston Living Magazine, though Wilson originally interviewed at Detyens Shipyards for a welder position, Chairman Loy Stewart saw something special in the young man. When he asked the interviewee what his dream job would be, without hesitation, Wilson answered “artist.” Loy hired the young man on the spot, and created an artist-in-residence spot for him. It’s an unusual place to find an artist, but the relationship has proved to be a productive one for all concerned.
“My primary responsibility is to the clients of the shipyard. Each ship owner is given a plaque or model of the ship as a thank you gift for the business.”
All images property of Matt Wilson, used with permission.