Dilapidated Mom-and-Pop Shops Stand Alone in the Scottish Highlands in New Paintings by Andrew McIntosh
“Pentangle” (2023), oil on linen, 200 x 150 centimeters. All images courtesy of James Freeman Gallery, shared with permission
In Dreamers, Andrew McIntosh simultaneously conveys the plight and resilience of small businesses, rendering lone shops and inns among desolate landscapes. The Scottish artist (previously) often taps into nostalgia and the forgotten, and he’s known for using the highlands of his childhood as a backdrop for his mysterious scenes in oil paint.
This new body of work, which is on view this month at James Freeman Gallery, pits the inhospitable landscape against the needs of commerce with a heavy dose of irony. A travel agency towers above a small island requiring a trip by boat to reach, a tanning salon glows amid a foggy forest, and a lawnmower repair shop stands amid an overgrown field. Often outfitting the buildings with flaking paint, neon signs, and graffiti, McIntosh positions each as a relic of a former era, positing that like the Romantic notions of a wild, untamable nature becoming outmoded, so is “the postwar idealism” of capitalism and enterprise.
If you’re in London, stop by the gallery to see Dreamers from May 18 to June 10. Otherwise, find more on Instagram.
“Neptunes” (2023), oil on linen, 200 x 150 centimeters
“Newman Arms” (2023), oil on gesso panel, 40 x 30 centimeters
“Austin” (2023), oil on linen, 200 x 150 centimeters
“Paradise Travel” (2023), oil on linen, 150 x 130 centimeters
“Sunset Beach” (2023), oil on linen, 200 x 150 centimeters
“The Clock Inn” (2023), oil on gesso panel, 40 x 30 centimeters
“Zodiac” (2023), oil on linen, 200 x 150 centimeters