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Havana Biennial 2019: Constructing the Possible Ocula Report Havana Biennial 2019: Constructing the Possible 17 Apr 2019 : Federica Bueti for Ocula

I first visited Havana in November 2016, a few days after Fidel Castro died, and just under a year before Hurricane Irma hit Cuba in September 2017. Since then, much has changed, including the hand-painted signs that punctuate the journey from the airport to the city centre, which today do not celebrate the revolution so much as the 'Unidad y...

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Andrew Stahl and Guo Xiaohui Ocula Conversation Andrew Stahl and Guo Xiaohui

The exhibition Beyond Boundaries at Somerset House in London (12 March–2 April 2019) marked the historic contributions of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing (CAFA) and the Slade School of Fine Art, University College London, on the occasion of their 100th and 150th anniversaries, respectively. Spread across several rooms of Somerset House's...

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The National 2019: New Australian Art Ocula Report The National 2019: New Australian Art 13 Apr 2019 : Elyse Goldfinch for Ocula

The National 2019: New Australian Art features work by 70 contemporary Australia-based artists split across three venues: the Art Gallery of New South Wales (AGNSW), Carriageworks, and the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA) (29 March–21 July 2019), as curated by Isobel Parker Philip, curator of photographs at AGNSW; Daniel Mudie Cunningham,...

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Joel Morrison

b. 1976, USA

Joel Morrison was born in Seattle, Washington in 1976. He received a BA in English Literature at Central Washington University, and an MFA in sculpture at the Claremont Graduate University in Claremont, CA.

Morrison’s sculptures engage a myriad of theoretical ventures, juxtaposing various genres and processes within the confines of a single work.  Morrison uses found and everyday objects to create a unique and sharp sense of tension in the surfaces of the sculptures he creates.  He demonstrates his technical ability to manipulate and harmonize these chosen objects—which have included neck braces, wasp nests, urinal refreshers, and bullets—with works that range from neo-classical Greek busts to grotesque, amorphous forms. Cast in stainless steel and highly polished, they form a reinvented dystopia, where mundane objects are glorified and classified into themes of Pop, Surrealism and Classicism.

One constant in Morrison's body of work is a dynamic conversation between his own brand of humor and the canonized body of art history. Tomb (2012), describes a wall hanging tableau covered with a cargo blanket, the stitched pattern of which mimics the geometric shapes from Frank Stella’s famed monolithic work, Getty Tomb, 1959. Where Stella’s rejection of the figurative is finite, Morrison’s hint at an obfuscated canvas holds limitless possibility. Encased in an unblemished bright nickel surface that abstracts all that it reflects, the facade envelops the color and shape from the world in real time in its ever-changing surface.

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Featured Artworks

View All (11)
Reaganomic Youth (version 2) by Joel Morrison contemporary artwork Joel MorrisonReaganomic Youth (version 2), 2012 Stainless steel
72.4 x 45.7 x 57.2 cm
Reflex Amsterdam
Monte Carlo by Joel Morrison contemporary artwork Joel MorrisonMonte Carlo, 2017 Stainless steel
81.3 x 71.1 x 61 cm
Reflex Amsterdam
Yoghurtland Gashuffer (Reagan) by Joel Morrison contemporary artwork Joel MorrisonYoghurtland Gashuffer (Reagan), 2017 Stainless steel
84 x 51 x 56 cm
Reflex Amsterdam
Weather Balloon Trapped in Duchamp by Joel Morrison contemporary artwork Joel MorrisonWeather Balloon Trapped in Duchamp, 2017 stainless steel
91.4 x 68.6 x 27.9 cm
Reflex Amsterdam
The Side Effects of Thinking by Joel Morrison contemporary artwork Joel MorrisonThe Side Effects of Thinking, 2014 Stainless steel
81.3 x 71.1 x 63.5 cm
Almine Rech
Minimal Heart Throb by Joel Morrison contemporary artwork Joel MorrisonMinimal Heart Throb, 2015 Stainless steel,
157.48 x 132.08 x 10.16 cm
Almine Rech
Minimal Glock by Joel Morrison contemporary artwork Joel MorrisonMinimal Glock, 2015 Stainless steel,
106.7 x 152.4 x 7.6 cm
Almine Rech
Still Crashing by Joel Morrison contemporary artwork Joel MorrisonStill Crashing, 2013 Stainless steel
111.8 x 149.9 x 73.7 cm
Almine Rech

Recent Exhibitions

View All (5)
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, All the World's A Stage at Reflex Amsterdam, Amsterdam
Closed
9 February–2 March 2019 Group Exhibition All the World's A Stage Reflex Amsterdam
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, In Times of Plenty: The Shape of Things Today at Reflex Amsterdam, Amsterdam
Closed
7 July–4 September 2018 Group Exhibition In Times of Plenty: The Shape of Things Today Reflex Amsterdam
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, New Beginnings at Reflex Amsterdam, Amsterdam
Closed
6 January–17 February 2018 Group Exhibition New Beginnings Reflex Amsterdam

Represented By

In Ocula Magazine

Joel Morrison Ocula Insight Joel Morrison By Diana d'Arenberg

I first met Joel Morrison in 2012 when I interviewed the LA-based artist for his solo show at Gagosian Gallery in Hong Kong. In the gallery stood a series of shiny metal sculptures, and on a cursory glance they looked to be the very embodiment of industrial luxury, quite at home in the slick minimalist white cube of a mega gallery. On closer...

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Art Basil [sic] Ocula Report Art Basil [sic] 31 Mar 2016 : Diana d'Arenberg for Ocula

I was Brainwashed the Friday before Art Basel Hong Kong kicked off. French street artist, Mr. Brainwash, was holding court—to an audience full of Hong Kong society types, complete with bodyguards, and media—with a spray can in a graffiti decorated shell-space in Lan Kwai Fong. It was one of several property developer-artist...

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