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Art & Life with Kasey McMahon

Today we’d like to introduce you to Kasey McMahon.

Kasey, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
I’m addicted to creating wonder. It’s a moment that I’m after. That feeling when you see something new or different, when you see the way the world works, or how it can work like you’ve never seen before. Those fleeting brushes with awe spark creativity and encourage discovery. That’s where curiosity lives — experiences that deepen the mystery and open doors to different perspectives. Those are the moments I live to create.

A 70s child and a product of experimental living, we lived off-grid for a few years without running water, electricity, or modern conveniences. That unconventional upbringing and the vivid contrast in later years drew my interest to the ways we navigate the world, and how little is actually necessary to exist. This led into an ongoing curiosity about our interactions with technology, the world, and each other.

I’m fascinated by the way that visuals can move us, and continue to circle between loving the urban chaos and human connection of the city and the solitude and natural beauty of rural places.

Can you give our readers some background on your art?
I make sculptures and environments with recycled and unconventional materials that highlight consumption and sustainability. There’s something exciting about taking a mountain of discarded objects and creating an entirely new and beautiful piece out of it. Electronic waste is the fastest growing part of the domestic waste stream in the world, and most of it is thrown away(!). I like drawing attention in fun and surprising ways to the vast amount of things we consume and am fascinated by the way technology is changing and intertwining us as humans.

Professionally, I create tangible art for movies, work on private commissions (art for art’s sake), and live to construct unique experiences. An intentional, whimsical thread runs through my work. It’s important to me to maintain a sense of lightness and surprise while addressing larger issues. Delight is a wonderful promoter of intrigue. I want the double take, the metaphor. I want someone to believe in magic for an instant.

What do I want to say with my art? Never lose your sense of wonder. Chase the sublime. Consume less. Look closer. Be curious. Celebrate awe. Allow yourself to really look at the world and define objects differently. Seek the magic in everyday things.

What would you recommend to an artist new to the city, or to art, in terms of meeting and connecting with other artists and creatives?
By definition, art is a solo pursuit. A comfort level with loneliness is part of the gig. But, as most of us know, life itself is a team effort. Some of my favorite builds have been collaborative. If/when you’re lonely or need to stretch in different ways, I’d recommend collaborating on a project that’ll get you out of your head. Also, for me, being out in nature always has a way of putting everything in perspective. Loneliness usually stems from me isolating and getting more buried in work (or my head) than I need to be or than is healthy. Helps me to remember that we’re social animals and that this whole ride we call being human is ultimately about the bonds we forge with each other. Remember that most folks want and need to connect. Step out, talk to people. A little effort goes a long way.

What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
I just completed three big sculptures for a film that will be released early next year. It’s my biggest work to date and I’m thrilled to unveil them. More info on that closer to release. You can always check my website for new work: http://atypicalart.com

Recently installed a piece at the Cosmopolitan Hotel in Las Vegas. It’s on permanent display in the BLVD tower near the Convention Hall.

I’m occasionally doing builds at the Brewery, just east of downtown Los Angeles.

Commissions are always welcome, feel free to contact me directly.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Birdcage Dress photo by Daniel Bergeron

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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