contemporary visual artist


practicing on Nyoongar Country in Walyalup / Fremantle, Western Australia


Art as Asset

Art as Asset examines the complex relationship between art, money and power. Digital collages are laser etched into anodised aluminium panels –– iconography from pop culture and art history, original and found images, drawings, shapes and faux product design rendered in black and grey.

In the heavily unregulated global art market where provenance can be murky and value speculative, artworks have become vessels for the world-wide movement of wealth. Blue chip art –– think Andy Warhol, Mark Rothko, and Jeff Koons –– has been the plaything of the super rich for centuries. Consequently their “value” oscillates between cultural, social and financial. A painting (worth of millions of dollars) can be celebrated in a major retrospective at the TATE one week and bling adorning the walls of a super yacht the next.

Each work unpacks some of the unique and bizarre situations where an artwork’s cultural, social or monetary value is challenged, used or manipulated. Artworks defaced through acts of protest or stolen for political gains. Objects taken from countries or people, and the debate surrounding their repatriation. Art collections that live on super yachts –– seaborne booty for the elite, a cache of capital extracted from the society which created it. Fraudulent transactions: in an industry primed for exploitation, art and artefact fakes have proliferated and entered into circulation fooling experts, dealers and buyers. Another work looks at the Geneva Freeport which boasts the largest collection of art in the world. A black box of untraceable, tax-free transactions of culture, arts and antiquity: once an object enters the storage facility it drops off the map and out of public circulation indefinitely.


︎︎︎ Download catalogue here.


Exhibition History

2023, Art as Asset, Moore Contemporary, Perth
Storming of Geneva (detail), 2023, Laser etched anodised aluminium, 175.4cm x 100.3cm

Art as Asset (install view at Moore Contemporary), 2023

(BM), 2023, Laser etched anodised aluminium, 115cm x 233.8cm

Storming of Geneva, 2023, Laser etched anodised aluminium, 175.4cm x 100.3cm

© Dan McCabe, 2024