contemporary visual artist


practicing on Nyoongar Country in Walyalup / Fremantle, Western Australia


Cut outs


Cut outs is a series of collages that appropriate the language, materials and equipment promoted in outdoor leisure activities. They are made from a combination of thermal blankets and automotive chrome vinyl, presented as semi-abstract landscape compositions.

Used in crisis situations, and considered a “must have” when entering the wild, thermal blankets are an affective but sometimes overestimated or misinformed last resort in a genuine emergency. Chrome wrap, on the other hand, is a material used in the automotive industry as a semi-permanent and cheap alternative to repainting. It literally wraps the car in a mirror-like veneer. Both are thin, space-age materials that create a barrier between you and the outside world.

In suburban Australia there is a fixation with the “wilderness” and its exploration. So much so that these encounters have become part of our national identity –– think 4x4, BCF, and escaping to the great outdoors. Car camping is pitched as the ultimate way to experience the landscape in a safe, urbanised way. You don’t go anywhere your car can’t reach and are able to deck-out the campsite with lounge-room like furnishings to help facilitate your “return to nature”. The combination of materials in Cut outs references this obscure relationship where there is a fetishistic concern for consumer objects, acquiring gear and using it –– the possibility of danger tacked down with the latest luxury tech.


Exhibition History

2015, Silver Age, Moana Project Space at Spring 1883, Sydney

© Dan McCabe, 2024