Webb turns metal to art

FROM SCRAP TO ART: Justin Webb with one of his creative metal sculptures in the LIA.
FROM SCRAP TO ART: Justin Webb with one of his creative metal sculptures in the LIA.

ART and sculpture may pop up more often in the Margaret River LIA, if metal artist Justin Webb has his way. On Friday he helped put up a commissioned sculpture for game foods supplier MR Mahogany, an Australian emblem with animals to match the business logo.

His signature, a spiderweb, is present in most of his large pieces.

About 50 of his pieces are on display at Boranup Gallery, where he will be the artist of the month in April, demonstrating how he works.

"I try to utilise all the old farming equipment and metal, to honour the metal," he said.

"I would always throw something in the scrap bin and then see something in it. I think of it as little pieces of history melted together to create a new story."

Older farmers often scrutinise his pieces to identify bits of old-fashioned machinery.

"I get a thrill when (they) recognise the bits," he said.

There are about 1100 welds in a piece like the one for MR Mahogany, with 250 individual pieces of metal, taking about five weeks to create.

Justin usually uses chunky steel in his works, but the MR Mahogany piece is for a roof and needed to be fairly lightweight. He would like to issue a friendly challenge to LIA businesses to display more arts and sculptures, to give the area an interesting local flavour.

Anyone interested in his work can contact WEBBmetal Art on 0488 563 637 or go to webbmetal.webs.com.