John Mason: Sculpture presents a survey of typologies: figures, spears, crosses, torques, and orbs – large-scale powerful works rendered from his latest experiments and research into form, structure, and color. With roots in his earliest forays into the expressive potential of clay, these latest series reflect Mason’s enduring interest in mathematics, science, computer applications, and aesthetics but present entirely new and distilled forms. Through trial and error and incessant material investigations, Mason has created a language of geometrical elements, stackable components and high fire glazes that culminate in elegant minimalist forms.
In Sculpture, Mason invents new ways of working with his materials and constructions. Through an innovative use of slab construction, the life-size monoliths twist, turn, and spring up from the ground in silhouettes of blue, green, ember, and white - their clay color and clay bodies inseparably bound. Devoid of clear directional stance or apparent logic of construction, the pieces illicit an overall phenomenological reaction that is greater than the sum of any of their parts.
Throughout his career, Mason has created abstract work that echoes -but is never defined by- facets of the world around him. The pieces in John Mason: Sculpture are reminiscent of the Nevada desert landscapes and indigenous Indian art he came into contact with in his youth but embody his later influences, including Buckminster Fuller’s dyomaxic maps and the pared-down aesthetic of mid-century California architecture. Ultimately, as with all his work to-date, they are mysterious and compelling visions in clay.