MINT is pleased to present Easier Prey, an exhibition of works from Leap Year artist Steve Morrison, opening October 6th and on view through November 2nd. There will be an opening reception for the exhibit on October 6th from 7pm-10pm.
Of Easier Prey, Morrison comments: “When I was a young child, my uncle sent me a mysterious birthday gift. I believe it was the only thing he ever sent me, adding to its cryptic significance. This singluar item he chose to bequeath upon me was a VHS tape entitled Dinosaurs and Other Strange Creatures. I watched this tape until it was worn out and wobbly, astonished by the stop-motion creatures fighting and dying before my eyes— in particular, a poignant scene featuring a giant ground sloth and a saber-toothed tiger. The sloth is the painter, a bewildered mascot for a medium of slowness and trying to learn how to adjust. It is the figure of the out-of-place and the desperate, too dim-witted and sluggish to adapt to a fast-paced, dynamically changing world. It is all of us as we awkwardly adapt our primitive paleolithic bodies and brains to navigate hyperreality and the Cloud. Its bulky bones lie under our feet today. This poor lumbering beast captured my imagination, and as I’ve painted this character over the past year it has come to represent many things to me.” Easier Prey delves into the relationship between the ancient past and the modern present, Morrison has created animated landscapes—using the soil, leaves, and mud of the megatherium’s habitat to make living drawings in the earth.
Steve Morrison received his BFA (Illustration) in 2006, and his MFA (Painting) in 2015. His studio practice explores transformations and breaks between evolving forms, creating cycles of growth, decay, and regeneration. Much of his work deals with overlapping scales of time—the rise and fall of mountain ranges, species, civilizations, loaves of bread dough, and breathing lungs become the same movement performed at different scales. Using paint, animation, digital processes, and sculpture, his art enacts a tragicomic theater of impermanence. Morrison received a grant from Idea Capital in 2017, and was awarded a Walthall Fellowship by WonderRoot in 2016-2017 (curated by Sarah Higgins of the Zuckerman Museum of Art). In 2015, he was a finalist for the Working Artist Project (MOCA-GA), curated by Siri Engberg of the Walker Art Center. Morrison is a professor at the University of West Georgia and lives in Atlanta.
Morrison is one of five 2018 Leap Year Artists. Leap Year, a residency program facilitated by MINT, supports emerging artists through studio space, mentorship, a stipend, and opportunities for public art and community service. This exhibition is the culmination of six months in his Leap Year studio at the Goat Farm Arts Center. Other artists in the 2018 cycle are Angela Davis Johnson, Alex C. Kerr, Crystal Desai, and Hasani Sahlehe.