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Former NBA All-Star Desmond Mason Now a Successful Artist

You may remember Desmond Mason as the NBA All-Star Slam Dunk Contest winner in 2001. While his

You may remember Desmond Mason as the NBA All-Star Slam Dunk Contest winner in 2001. While his glory days on the court have come to an end, Mason has since found another skill to hone at: fine art. With a distinctive nod at the late Jean-Michel Basquiat’s vibrant style, Mason’s art is both abstract and captivating, counting the likes of George Clooney, Alex Rodriguez and Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz as fans. Even former NBA commissioner David Stern bought one of Mason’s pieces — a portrait painting of Al Pacino from Carlito’s Way – and a businessman from Chicago has recently purchased a painting for $60,000 USD. It’s fair to say that Mason has made a successful career out of what he once considered a hobby.

On his work, Mason recently told the New York Post:

“I’m not a Hall of Famer and I’m not an All-Star either… I won a dunk contest once. With art, I feel like I am working really hard and getting better… When I was growing up in a bad neighborhood with drugs and violence, art was my getaway.”

Mason has hosted several exhibitions, including one at Art Basel Miami in 2014. His debut exhibition will kick off in New York February 12 at the Athletes for Art Renaissance Tour event in Chelsea. Check out the video above for an inside look at Mason’s creative process, and stay tuned for more from the fledgling artist.

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