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  • John Mason

    United States

    Art Brokerage: John Mason American Artist: b. 1927. John Mason (born in 1927 in Madrid, Nebraska) is a contemporary American artist. From very early on, Mason's work focused on exploring the physical properties of clay and its extreme plasticity. Mason is recognized for his focus and steady investigation of mathematical concepts relating to rotation, symmetry, and modules as well as his formal innovation with the ceramic medium. While his early childhood was spent in the midwest, Mason's family moved to Fallon, Nevada in 1937, where he finished elementary and high school. Mason settled in Los Angeles in 1949 at the age of 22. Mason attended Otis Art Institute, and in 1954 enrolled at Chouinard Art Institute, where he became a student and close friend of ceramicist Peter Voulkos. The two rented a studio space together in 1957, which they shared until Voulkosn move to Berkeley, CA in the fall of 1958. Maons's early Vertical Sculptures from the early 1960s were associated with contemporary trends in Abstract Expressionism and also with the aesthetics of primitivism. In their rawness, spontaneity and expressiveness, as writer Richard Marshall has described it, the pieces give the impression of having been formed by natural forces. The formal and technical aspects of balance, proportion, and stability, although purposefully planned and controlled are subsumed by the very presence of the material itself. Mason later equipped his studio to prepare, manipulate, and fire monumental sculptures in clay, many of which had to be fired in pieces weighing over a ton in kilns that had already been adapted to serve his large-scale purposes. As writer and curator Barbara Haskell wrote in the introduction to the catalog for Mason's 1974 retrospective at the Pasadena Museum of Art. Listings wanted by Art Brokerage.

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