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b. 1976, United States

Joel Morrison Biography

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.

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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.

In 2006, he was a featured artist in the California Biennial held at the Orange County Museum of Art, as well as a participant in the critically acclaimed Thing exhibition at the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles. In 2010, Morrison was featured in Six Solos at the Wexner Center for the Arts.  His numerous other group and solo exhibitions have been at venues throughout the world including the Kolbe Museum, Berlin; Haus Am Waldsee Museum, Berlin; and Santa Monica Museum of Art.

Joel Morrison
featured artworks

Tortilla Maker by Joel Morrison contemporary artwork sculpture
Joel Morrison Tortilla Maker, 2012 Stainless steel
35.6 x 48.3 x 40.6 cm
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Reaganomic Youth (version 2) by Joel Morrison contemporary artwork sculpture
Joel Morrison Reaganomic Youth (version 2), 2012 Stainless steel
72.4 x 45.7 x 57.2 cm
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Monte Carlo by Joel Morrison contemporary artwork sculpture
Joel Morrison Monte Carlo, 2017 Stainless steel
81.3 x 71.1 x 61 cm
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Yoghurtland Gashuffer (Reagan) by Joel Morrison contemporary artwork sculpture
Joel Morrison Yoghurtland Gashuffer (Reagan), 2017 Stainless steel
84 x 51 x 56 cm
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Weather Balloon Trapped in Duchamp by Joel Morrison contemporary artwork sculpture
Joel Morrison Weather Balloon Trapped in Duchamp, 2017 Stainless steel
91.4 x 68.6 x 27.9 cm
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Joel Morrison
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