Andy McIntosh



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'Cactus', Concrete and ink, 320 x 250mm

'Under the Bridge', Concrete, ink, steel and zinc, 340 x 440mm

'The Stars are out', Concrete, ink and zinc, 390 x 240mm

'Edinburgh', Steel, zinc, plaster, plastic, aluminium and concrete, 520 x 320mm

'The Proposal', Plaster, steel, concrete, plastic and steel, 440 x 180mm


While Andy’s work isn’t directly political, one can’t escape the allusion to the 20 million tonnes of commercial waste that are generated each year in Scotland alone. While some of McIntosh’s works allow the inherent appeal of a pre-used material to shine through, others, like cubic bales of crushed coke cans, are there to make us think about the sheer volume of rubbish that we produce and are being forced to face up to.

Originally a traditional landscape painter, Andy took a fork in his artistic path in 2005, setting a challenging series of parameters for his practice. He would continue to make paintings, only without brushes, paints or canvas. He began to form assemblages from scrap metal, letting the patina, textures and wear inherent in the materials speak for themselves.
Placed in the gallery context, and sometimes elevated by frames, scrap objects begin to take on characters of their own. This is a phenomenon which Andy uses to approach the problem of commercial waste with a certain postmodern humour. Reminiscent of the early pop sensibilities of Rauschenberg and Peter Blake, one of McIntosh’s works involves a discarded hot water tank, rusty and with its paint flaking off, entitled “So Long and Thanks For All The Hot Water”.

Still working with technical materials, the artist has invented a new technique - concrete printing. This process, discovered by accident, involves images printed onto acetate transferred onto a concrete surface, which absorbs the ink. This results in a 2-D image which is something of an industrial fresco for the 21st century.

More recently, Andy has begun to take his scavenging urge to wilder places, and to bring natural materials into his assemblages. His latest works are made from driftwood, acorns, and pebbles, still all collected from Scotland and again arranged to create landscapes. Reminiscent of Georgia O’Keefe’s ability to find and present the narrative that emits from a natural object, these works are imbued with a sense of place.


Growing up in Perth, Andy first exhibited at the Perth Art Festival at age 16. To his relief, he sold half of the works exhibited - now he knew he was destined for a career in art. However, he decided to take the “sensible” route after graduating from Edinburgh College of Art in 1991, and became a graphic designer rather than a fine artist. In the end, it wasn’t a bad decision - he embarked on a successful 20-year career working in film, television, and on the web.

Stirrings of Andy’s desire for scrap were there from early adulthood. Working at a Granton scrapyard in his youth, he adopted an unusual muse - a huge, blue piece of discarded metal, which he would cart around with him for years to come, drawing both inspiration and comfort from the object. The artist’s dedication to this piece was great - his dad even accidentally cut himself on the metal at one point and had to get a tetanus injection. Luckily, Andy’s father is also artistic, so he was relatively understanding.

In 2006, McIntosh decided that he had waited too long to become a fine artist and began making again in earnest. Since then, he has exhibited widely in Edinburgh, showing with the Scottish Society of Artists in 2008, and as part of the Royal Scottish Academy’s Open Exhibition in 2013. In 2015 he exhibited at the Yosifu Contemporary Arts Centre in Taiwan, and in 2014 he co-created underwater vinyl scenes for new Gamma Camera Scanning Room at Royal Hospital for Sick Children in Edinburgh. In 2015, graduate filmmaker Michal Korzonek made a short film about Andy’s career, entitled ‘Green with Orange.’