Paul Mason (sculptor)

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Paul Mason
Born Paul William Mason
23 June 1952
Bolton, Lancashire
Died 9 May 2006 (Aged 53)
Nationality British
Known for Sculptor
Spouse(s) 1st Susan Disley, 2nd Emma Talbot
Awards Winner of the Royal Academy Gold Medal in 1976

Paul Mason (23 June 1952 – 9 May 2006) was a British sculptor and artist working mainly in stone and marble.[1] Winner of the Royal Academy Gold Medal in 1976, his work has been exhibited in the United Kingdom and Europe, including the Tate Gallery, St Ives and the Bauhaus Kunst-Archiv in Berlin.

Personal life and education[edit]

Paul William Mason was born on 23 June 1952 in Bolton, Lancashire.[1] Mason first married Susan Disley, a ceramicist, with whom he had a son, Joseph. He later married a painter, Emma Talbot, to whom he was married at the time of his death. Together they had sons Zachary and Daniel.[1] As of 2006, Emma was the Head of Painting and Two-Dimensional (2D) at St Martin’s College, University of the Arts, London.[2]

Mason studied first at Bolton College of Art & Design from 1970 to 71. Next he studied at Wolverhampton Polytechnic from 1971 to 74, under John Paddison, and finally at the Royal Academy from 1974 to 77, under Willi Soukop.[1][3]


He is known for his exterior sculptures, dubbed "iconic stone carved pieces that are large scale interpretations of natural form", but he also painted, drew, created collages and made smaller sculptures.[4]

Of his works, Mason said:

My works attempt to recognise and emulate the natural forces inherent in both carving and the geology. There is something deeply attractive and satisfying about the sculptural processes on both scales, and the dialogue between them that occurs quite naturally within the fragment and the whole.[1]

He taught from 1993–1997 at Northumbria University. Mason taught at Derby University after Northumbria.[2] In 2004, at Derby University, he became Professor of Sculpture.[1] Mason also taught at art schools in Loughborough and Staffordshire.[1]

Mason had in-house residencies in his career, including one at Gloucester Cathedral in 2000–01 and the other in 1996 at Tate St. Ives, where he worked in Barbara Hepworth’s Studio.[2][4]


This is a partial list of Mason's works.

Work Year Location Type Notes and References
Hinge 1977 Harlow New Town, Harlow, Essex Sculpture, red sandstone The 5 foot outdoor sculpture, commissioned by Sir Frederick Gibberd, is positioned near post-war sculptures.[1] It is at the Gibberd Garden.[5]
Vertex 1979 Harlow, Essex Sculpture, dove grey Bardolino marble from Carrara The work, located on the Broad Walk, is 76 × 76 × 213 cm. Visit Harlow said it was his first major commission.[6]
Centenary Square 1985 Sheffield [1]
Courtyard 1985 Harlow, Essex Sculpture, marble Mason created the work, which is 21 × 26.5 × 2.5 cm, for the Harlow District Council to commemorate Alan Medd's service to the city as Treasurer and Town Clerk. It is at Gibberd Gallery in the Civic Centre.[5]
Leaf Field 1987 Museum of St Albans, St Albans Sculpture, Lincolnshire limestone The 1/2 ton sculpture, originally made for the Alban Arena, is located outside the Museum of St Albans.[7]
Above & Below 1993 Southampton Ancaster Limestone The work is located at the National Maritime Building.[3]
North Sta 1994 Edinburgh Sculpture, marble and related artworks. Edinburgh City Council commissioned the work.[3]
Seaham Promenade sculptures and panels 1998 Durham Sculpture and mosaic panels He was lead artist for the Groundwork Trust East Company commission.[3][8]
Gloucester Cathedral 2000–2001 Gloucester Carvings Residency for one year to produce carvings for the cathedral.[1]
East Yar River Project 2002 Isle of Wight Sculptures, Portland stone Six sculptures are positioned from Niton to Brading. Island 2000 Trust commissioned the work.[3][9]


The following are partial lists of Mason's exhibitions.

Solo exhibitions[edit]

2005 Stone Landscapes. Quay Arts. Newport Isle of Wight.[2]
2001 “Division as Structure" Reliefs & Drawings Bauhaus Archiv, Berlin.[2][3]
1998 Six Chapel Row, Bath.[3]
1997 “From the Ocean Floor” Djanogly Arts Centre, Nottingham.[3]
1996 Tate Gallery St Ives. Installation and new work sited throughout the permanent collection.[3]

Group exhibitions[edit]

2004 Fermynwoods Gallery, Northampton with John Holden[10]
1999 Dock Museum, Barrow in Furness.[3]
1997 Drawing Exhibition, Newlyn Art Gallery.[3]
1995 “Divers Memories” Pitt Rivers Museum, Oxford.[3]

Retrospective exhibitions[edit]

2012 Tarpey Gallerys[11]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Manley, David. (19 May 2006). "Paul Mason, Stone carver in the Moore tradition." London: The Independent. Retrieved 3 September 2012.
  2. ^ a b c d e Baker-Alder, Helen. (5 June 2006). In memory of Paul Mason, 1952-2006. Insight, Northumbria University. Retrieved 3 September 2012.[permanent dead link]
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Paul Mason. Kemper Art Museum. Retrieved 3 September 2012. Note: additional commissions listed.
  4. ^ a b Paul Mason. Archived 2013-02-03 at Tarpey Gallery. Retrieved 3 September 2012.
  5. ^ a b Courtyard. Archived 2011-01-13 at the Wayback Machine. Visit Harlow. Retrieved 3 September 2012.
  6. ^ Vertex. Archived 2011-01-13 at the Wayback Machine. Visit Harlow. Retrieved 3 September 2012.
  7. ^ Mistry, Manisha. (4 January 2011). Sculpture by Paul Mason placed outside the Museum of St Albans. St Albans & Harpenden Review, Newsquest. Retrieved 3 September 2012.
  8. ^ Paul Mason, Seaham. Easington + Art. Durham County Council. p. 15. Retrieved 3 September 2012.
  9. ^ Yar River Trail Walking Route. GPS Cycling and Walking Routes. Retrieved 3 September 2012.
  10. ^ John Holden and Paul Mason, Painting and sculpture Archived 2008-09-07 at the Wayback Machine.. Fermynwoods Gallery. Retrieved 3 September 2012.
  11. ^ Paul Mason Retrospective at Tarpey Gallery. Nottingham Visual Arts, 9 January 2012. Retrieved 3 September 2012.

Further reading[edit]

  • Mason, Paul. (1987). Paul Mason: "the Cutting Edge": Sculpture 1977-1987. Contributors: Bolton Museum and Art Gallery, Usher Gallery in Lincoln, and Wolverhampton Art Gallery. Bolton Museum and Art Gallery. ISBN 0906585171.

External links[edit]