Growing up in Perth, my playground was often an empty nightclub. With a club-owning father who often spent his daytime dreaming up new architectural adjustments, I was left free to roam by myself. My attention landed on small minutiae that became portals into another time: I pretended the buttons on a DJ mixer were a spaceship controller; the grooves in vinyl records appeared like memory tablets, glass fragments and the sticky surfaces of alcohol-soaked concrete offered clues to the events that happened the night before. I was led through secret passages into back rooms and stages framed with semi-permanent metal structures. That’s when I started to think about these buildings as living labyrinths and assemblages of textural detail that continue to shift in the mind.
After graduating in 2013 with an MFA in Painting from the National Art School, Sydney I was awarded a three-month studio residency at the British School at Rome, Italy the following year. It was here that I studied ancient fresco painting, which led me to look closely at the various connections between painting and the built fabric of cities. For my current PhD research at UNSW Art + Design, I'm looking at how the iterative activity and thickness of painting’s surface can become a relational site of production, positioning painting as a critical spatial practice.
Mason Kimber is a Sydney-based visual artist who works across painting, sculptural relief and installation. His practice engages with the social and material aspects of architecture, with a particular focus on their relationship to memory. By reworking images, imprints and cast fragments into new compositions, his work registers the histories that accumulate in the built fabric of cities and how they shape our understanding of place.
Kimber is currently a PhD candidate at UNSW Art & Design and holds a Master of Fine Art (painting) from the National Art School, Sydney. He has been a finalist the Sulman Prize, Churchie National Emerging Art Prize, Sunshine Coast Art Prize and NSW Visual Arts Fellowship (Emerging). He has been awarded studio residencies at the British School at Rome, Italy, Parramatta Artists Studios and Artspace, Sydney. His work is held in the collections of Artbank and the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia.
MASON KIMBER WALL RELIEF COMMISSION
‘Bronte Wall Commission’ is a permanent, double-sided wall relief for a private house in Bronte, NSW.
What may seem like prefabricated sculpture was actually conceived on site in the process of a layered, thickened painting. The work was slowly carved, collaged, edited and rendered in response to the surface minutiae and histories of the area.
MASON KIMBER AT MCA
Mason Kimber’s practice encompasses painting, sculptural reliefs, collage and installation. His work engages with the social dimension of architecture, in particular its relationship to memory. By reworking images and casts of architectural fragments into new compositions, Kimber explores the way physical facades and interiors become triggers – and also vessels – for feelings and recollections.
Mason Kimber, Rooftop/Sway, 2019, 121.7 x 82.2 x 8.5cm, flashe, acrylic, synthetic polymer, gypsum, extruded polystyrene, polyurethane foam, resin
Museum of Contemporary Art, purchased with funds provided by the MCA Foundation
Mason Kimber, Window/Shift, 2018, 116.5 x 78.5 x 8.5cm, acrylic, synthetic polymer, gypsum, extruded polystyrene, polyurethane foam, resin
Museum of Contemporary Art, purchased with funds provided by the MCA Foundation, 2020
MASON KIMBER AT TOWN HALL GALLERY
Works by Mason Kimber are included the exhibition Shelter in Place, on display at Town Hall Gallery from 10 July until 25 September 2021.
This group exhibition examines the relationship between human beings and architecture, and focuses on the ways in which our built environment is used to foster ideas of home, shelter and belonging.
Image: Mason Kimber, Daylight 15, 2020
WORKS BY MASON KIMBER ON THE DESIGN FILES
Works by Mason Kimber are featured on The Design Files in a Park Orchards home designed by Chelsea Hing.
To enquire about available works, please contact the gallery.
Image: Mason Kimber, Afternoon 7, 2019, featured on The Design Files. Photo: Rhiannon Taylor. Styling: Beck Simon
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