Scott Greene – MOBRO: High Seas Drifter


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Artwork Description

MOBRO: High Seas Drifter

Dimensions: 50 x 64″
Year: 2015
Media: oil on canvas over panel

Scott Greene’s oil on canvas over panel work, MOBRO: High Seas Drifter, references the Mobro 4000, an ocean liner tasked with carrying over three thousand tons of trash to North Carolina, but which was forced to return to New York after an inhibited and circuitous journey. Greene revitalizes the historic tale by rendering the ship in his own artistic style, calling into question whether such events still occur today and allowing viewers to visually realize the effects of human excess. There is no crew or physical presence aboard the ship, suggesting that the very material that represents a product of human consumption has now consumed its producers.

Scott Greene’s work is not associated with a definitive time period, but instead, works to integrate art historical and classical elements into a more contemporary approach. Greene’s work functions as a form of socio-political commentary and “uses the composition of a historical work as a matrix for making a painting that humorously examines the relationship between politics, nature and culture”. Greene draws on themes such as beauty, popular culture, and the natural environment in an additive artistic process that emphasizes the visual and temporal effects of building rather than executing a work in a single instance. After studying in California and receiving his BFA in painting from the San Francisco Art Institute, Greene moved to New Mexico, where he received his MFA in painting and has since lived for almost 30 years. Greene’s work derives much of its influence from this matrix; where he describes that, “the expansive space, vivid light and western frame of reference informs the narrative content in my work, and the alien beauty of high desert skies serve as backdrops for many compositions”. Greene also touches on the complex interplay between beauty and environmental exploitation within his oeuvre—an issue he sees as being both pertinent to and prevalent within New Mexico, today.