SK Studio Visits: Nevine Mahmoud

Posted on March 08, 2018

H A N D - C A R V E D 

If you're at NADA this week, make sure to stop by M+B's booth to view the work of Nevine Mahmoud, a Los Angeles-based contemporary artist (and friend of SK!) who works primarily with the ancient technique of stone carving. 

It's not difficult to become fascinated with the often candy-colored, large-scale stone carvings, or with the notion of the intensity of work and technique involved with creating them. And it's certainly not difficult to get lost in the symbolism of the stones themselves, which are among the most ancient of all materials (and, of course, a material that we favor). Mahmoud brings a newness of vision and work to the time-honored craft. Read our interview with Mahmoud below!  


SK: How did you come to work with sculpture and installation? How did you come to working specifically as a carver? 

NM: I’ve always felt that making objects, and those identified as “Sculpture,” was the most challenging process of art-making. This drew me to it. I started working with stone a few years after. I moved to Los Angeles and discovered a community of people and resources specific to that material.

SK: What do you listen to while in the studio?

NM: I listen to a variety of music, depending on my mood and what’s going on with the work. I listen to a lot of UK R&B and dancehall when energy needs to be high. NTS Radio, based in London and now LA, has a lot of great mixes and familiar DJs. 

SK: What is your zodiac sign, and do you feel as though the traits associated with the sign are true of your personality?

NM: I am a solid Aquarius. Moon in Taurus and rising in Leo. I identify very closely with my chart.

SK: Do you find that living in LA effects your creative process?

NM: I do. LA is a great place to work outdoors and manage materials manually and personally. You can find anything you want, go to the source, see it in the flesh, and touch it with your hands. It’s very inspiring. 

SK: Who are your favorite artists? Or specific works? Are they the artists who most inspire your work?

NM: There are too many sculptors who shaped my education to list. The same goes for my peers who continuously influence and support my work. I’ve been thinking about Noguchi’s playground maquettes and swimming pool models a lot recently. They are perfect little sculptures.

Noguchi Playscapes, images courtesy MoMA

SK: You work with such incredible stones—how do you select them, and do you have a favorite stone to work with?

NM: I work with a stone quarry in Ventura and many pieces evolved from what was available. Now I have suppliers across the US and Italy. I love working with Portuguese pink marble and Japanese ice alabaster.

SK: Do you wear jewelry? If so, which pieces do you never (or almost never take off)?

SK: Of course my silver Spinelli Kilcollin ring and Mondo Mondo silver and gold gem rings. I also have a gorgeous garnet Tony kunz ring, by a Swiss designer, who’s work is beautiful. 

SK: Favorite SK piece?

NM: The custom ring that SK designed for my mother! It has pink rubies and green stones with 18k gold and silver bands. It is incredible and she also never takes it off.

SK: What's your go-to studio outfit? Do you dress differently when you're not in the studio?

NM: My studio clothes are mostly practical; I have to be protected when working with the heavy machinery or keep cool (or warm) depending on the climate. Denim is always the best bet.  

Mahmoud attended Goldsmiths University in London before receiving her MFA from University of Southern California in Los Angeles. Her work has been shown at exhibition spaces including M+B Gallery, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, Ballroom Marfa, Josh Lilley Gallery, Arturo Bandini Gallery, James Fuentes Gallery, and Francois Ghebaly Gallery. She is represented by M+B Gallery. 


N E V I N E  A T  N A D A 

Breast Impressions by Nevine Mahmoud will be on view at Booth 2.11 until March 11, 2018


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