Updated: Jan 4, 2020
In this special edition of the Artist in 10, I team up with videographer Ahlee the Great to interview textile artist and clothing designer Mason Webb and to discuss his latest exhibition.
"‘i miss you, Carefree” deals with the exploration of self through a form of textile impressionism. Using stucco and imprints of fabrics reminiscent of where the artist spent his formative years; Mason brings to light his foundation in pattern styles and elements of the desert he called home. Between the charm of the Western and Victorian aesthetic in combination with his Southern roots, each of these components have left their own forms of sedimentary remnants that represent his youth where he first discovered his love of textures. Fossilizing the evolution of changing techniques and phases of his life, this body of work expresses how he overcame the hardships of living in Arizona and the strength of the foliage that grew from that." - Wish ATL, The Gallery
A month ago, I gave a ride to Mason as he prepared to launch off into the next big step in his career. Upon our first meeting, I was already introduced to his world as I helped transport a piece of art to the Wish Gallery in Little Five Points Atlanta, he spoke of how everything felt perfectly aligned for these pieces to be shared. Webb is not a flashy, egotistical personality. He is an approachable, friendly individual that somehow packs passion into a seemingly calm and reserved demeanor- until the passion pops like fireworks in conversation. For an artist who has just turned the corner of his quarter-century mark, he has experienced life, loss, and struggle that brings wisdom and perspective. It is very apparent in the personal stories that inspired this exhibit. Mason hopes these works of art will draw more inspiration from home as he looks to continue to work in clothing design. Through the visual and written medium, we will introduce you to Mason Webb's most important pieces of art and parts of his journey told through his work.
Artists/Designers that you take inspiration from?
This installation is really for my hometown. The people and designers that always stand out in my mind are [Martin] Margiela… artists like [Robert] Rauschenberg…. I don’t find a lot of juice from a lot of other artists... I try and really work through my own voice.
This piece [Adaven] seems to be the core piece to this exhibit.
This piece [Adaven] is my whole life… Growing up in a blue collar and white collar [environment] at the same time. This piece has a dress but there’s still denim on it to represent a working man’s mentality all the time. [In the Southwest] it doesn’t matter how classy you can always be but [rather] how hard do you work. This piece resonates from my times in Nevada and my mom having a huge love for Victorian fabrics... it’s all made me who I am today.
Any Gallery Goals? Where do you dream of your art being displayed?
Man yeah, I would love to see these pieces in the Whitney (New York), I would love to see these pieces in the Guggenheim (New York)…. I would love to see these pieces in the High Museum (Atlanta). We’re gonna do all we can to be in the High Museum.
IN-n-OUT or CHIK-FIL-A?
Oh man! See... it's hard for me because my mom would get my Chik-fil-a breakfast every morning on the way to school… I’ll always pick Chik-fil-a. In-n-Out is great….but there’s no beating Chik-fil-a.
Do you prefer art from pain or art from pleasure/joy/relaxation?
Pain. Spite. In a sense where….. It comes from inspiration but sometimes when I’m going through some tough stuff, I just want to make some really wild work that encapsulates [those feelings]….. I want to prove myself in the manner that I want.
What would your 13 year old self thinking about the art you make?
My 13 year old self would have no idea that we ending up in this place and time…. I really didn’t get into things like this until [I was] 18.
If tape decks were still around, what 5 songs would you automatically put on your mixtape?
Sinner Man - Nina Simone
Luckenbach Texas - Waylon Jennings
If I Can’t - 50 Cent
Decatur Psalm - Outkast
Turiya and Ramakrishna - Alice Coltrane
Are you cooler than Jeff Goldbloom?
I think Jeff Goldbloom is cool dude, but he’s a little quirkier than I am… I leave it at that. I really appreciate his work… we’ll let time tell.
Although Mason Webb’s exhibit at the Wish Gallery in Little Five Points will be soon coming to a close, his work is available to view and purchase on his website.
Mason Webb could be the next big thing. His crowds sure know it.
Llama Ruckus is a journalist, songwriter and producer from Atlanta, Georgia. His primarily genre is trip-hop; blends of elements from funk, surf rock, chill hop, blues, synthpop, and psychedelic rock/jazz.