Sep 30th 2023

Rebecca Morris: 2001–2022 presents a 21-year survey of painter Rebecca Morris (b. 1969, Honolulu, HI; lives in Los Angeles, CA), an artist best known for her large-scale paintings and inventive approach to composition, color, and gesture. One of the most formidable painters working today, Morris’s practice demonstrates a rigorous commitment to experimentation and abstraction. This exhibition, which originated at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, marks the artist’s first major museum survey since 2005.

Featuring a range of paintings produced since 2001 and showcasing the artist’s progression of styles and rigorous commitment to experimentation and abstraction, the exhibition includes 27 paintings. It highlights several formal tendencies that Morris has developed over the years, resulting in a distinct and recognizable visual language. Her arsenal of techniques includes erasure, dripping, and spray painting, applied to canvases lying flat on the floor in an active, physical process. Recurring motifs—such as atomization; the use of patterns, grids, and checkerboards; interlocking geometric forms; painted borders delimiting the picture plane; and her characteristic use of color, including metallic hues and saturated tones, are traced through groupings of works.

Morris’s dynamic paintings contain formal tensions and contradictions through their embrace of patterns and textures, and the visibility of the artist’s hand in every gesture. Her work pushes against the historical foundation of her chosen medium and offers a glimpse into new ways forward for the constantly evolving and expanded field of painting.

Rebecca Morris: 2001–2022 is organized by the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (ICA LA). The exhibition is curated by Jamillah James, Manilow Senior Curator, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, and former Senior Curator, ICA LA, with Caroline Ellen Liou, Curatorial Assistant. The presentation at the MCA is organized by James with Jack Schneider, Assistant Curator.

Image Info: Rebecca Morris, Untitled (#09-05), 2005. Oil and spray paint on canvas; 70 x 57 in. (178 x 145 cm). Collection of Robin Loewenberg Tebbe and Mark Tebbe.

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