Raised in NYC, he graduated from NYIT in 2002 with a Fine Arts degree. Mr. Watt began his career by attending his first of many Artexpo New York in 2003, as a gallery representative. Coming full circle, 2018 marks Mr. Watt’s triumphant return to the Expo, but now as a gallery owner and celebrated artist in his own right. This transformation is reminiscent of his own work, wherein industrial metals – aluminum, copper, brass – experience a scathing journey to emerge anew, while still retaining their enduring character. As Mr. Watt explains, “Metal forgives, but it never forgets.”
Cassidy Watt’s manipulation of metal combines a variety of techniques. It begins with an experimental phase, as the medium – aluminum, copper, steel, or brass – reveals its reaction to various applications of patina, torch or hammer. Mr. Watt experiments with different compounds to apply chemical fuming, resist processing and acid pickling to the metal. Scourged, scorched and scarified, the various results are juxtaposed, with confrontations of opposition and resolution, in the form of a vertical totem. As totems, the colloquy of their textures, colors and tones invoke the complexity of emotional language.
The alchemy of Mr. Watt’s aesthetic finds its origin in the industrial city of his youth, which transects the high desert mountains of his chosen adult life. His metalwork twists and interlaces like the Brooklyn Bridge, but is then weathered by caustic forces reminiscent of the New Mexican sun.
His Remnants totem series is created by combining orphan pieces until the disparate parts yield a conversational whole, a living history. As Mr. Watt explains, “Metal yields, but it also endures, allowing each piece to tell its unique story.”