Artist Fabian Williams was born in the turbulent military town of Fayetteville, North Carolina in 1975. He studied illustration at East Carolina University and moved to Atlanta in…. Watching his uncle sketch human figures in a worn wired notebook began Fabian’s inspired journey into the art world. His uncle’s ability to transform the natural world into a flattened image appeared magical to the young artist. Highly observant, Fabian contends his work is “about what I observe and what I perceive,” and his observations of popular culture and the ways in which it can both reshape and reinforce beliefs are at the center of his work. Fabian is most recognized in Atlanta, receiving a “Best Of City” nod from Creative Loafing, for his art battle–a performance piece that includes fine art competition known as the World Wide Art Federation. His mix of wrestling kitsch and hip hop bravado and the other artist-participants’ creation of their own mythical nom de plumes–including pimps, superheroes, and sexy villainesses–have distinguished Fabian’s art battles from similar art exhibitions by engaging the audience in much richer ways. Fabian also perceives a contemporary Black life that is unencumbered by tired tropes of black suffering and exoticism: “I’m not so much concerned about what has happened in the past as it pertains to race but what is happening with me and people like me” as a result of that past. Fabian states “I study social and political structures and how they affect me and others through my art.” To Fabian an intentionally depoliticized image is inherently political. Moving into much more overtly political terrain, his latest installation, Con-Trap-tion,depicts a Rube Goldberg Machine, a deliberately over-engineered machine that performs a very simple task in a very complex fashion. Rather than inventing an overly complex machine to burn toast, Williams’ invention uses metaphorical wheels and pulleys to transform a black male infant into a social miscreant.