By Cody Crawford
Not everyone can say they get artistic inspiration from a scrap metal yard, but Daniel Sheridan does. A welder and artist, Daniel has created over 20 pieces of art from junk metal. He created his first piece of artwork when he was 18 years old and he and his dad were repairing tools. “I switched mediums several times before I started welding,” he explained. “I saw all this other stuff people were making, and I said to myself, I can do that.”
Daniel works in a metal fabrication shop, but manages to find time for his hobby in addition to working full time and spending time with his wife and stepson.
His creative process stems from his ability to see things differently. He says since it’s difficult to mold metal into other things, “You have to see a piece that can be something. Going to the scrap yard helps a lot. I like to go to the scrap yard and try to have an open mind.” He created one piece, a metal crab, almost entirely out of tractor parts. The shell of the crab was an old tractor seat, and the legs and claws were fashioned from bush hog blades.
The largest piece of art he has made is also his favorite. A palm tree that stands over seven feet tall was originally a commissioned piece. Daniel liked it so much that he made a duplicate to keep for himself. He says although it took the most amount of time, it is the best piece he’s ever done.
Much of Daniel’s art may be found at Wild Duck Soup Emporium on the square in Centerville, and he has makes commissioned art as well.
“Wild Duck Soup Emporium has been interested in Daniel Sheridan’s work since he exhibited in an Outsider Exhibit at Martin Methodist University a few years ago, in Pulaski,” Gallery Owner Antonia Meadors remarked. “The sense of humor that emerges from his pieces makes some of them whimsical, and all of them boldly unique. I am intrigued that he sees a common everyday piece of metal (and other things), in a completely different way than that for which they were intended.
“We are looking forward to having some of Daniel’s larger pieces installed in the Arts & Ag Garden at Wild Duck Soup Emporium. The Opening Reception is planned for May 1, 2014 at 6:30 p.m. He will share the bill with Jo Neace Krause, a painter, who also fits the Outsider genre,” Meadors concluded.
“God’s given me a lot,” Sheridan said. “I have a great family. I got a job because of my hobby, and I’m very thankful for everything in my life.”
Exhibits by both Sheridan and Neace are scheduled to be part of the 2014 Arts & Ag Tour in Hickman County on May 23 and 24. Visit artsandagtour.wordpress.com for more information.
For more photos by Cindy Sarlo, visit her Facebook page.