Reference Entry

Morrison, Paul

Morgan Falconer

in Oxford Art Online

Published online December 2000 | e-ISBN: 9781884446054 | DOI:

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(b Liverpool, April 27, 1966).

English painter and printmaker. He studied at Sheffield City Polytechnic (1985–8) and at Goldsmiths’ College, London (1995–8). He emerged in the mid-1990s with paintings that he described as ‘cognitive landscape’. Built up from a series of black-and-white silhouettes, his images often seem simultaneously like collections of schematic motifs and like scenes derived from a specific viewpoint, often rigidly defined by fences and plants placed in the immediate foreground. Such is the case with Raik (1999; see June 1999 article, p. 29), which depicts large silhouettes of spiky thistles crowding up in the foreground, while softer, cartoon renditions of clouds, trees and hills sit on a distant horizon line; it is typical of his work in its dramatic contrast between foreground and background. The schematic and synthetic quality of Morrison’s imagery and compositions alike is encouraged by his method of working, which involves the use of computers to manipulate motifs and projectors to transfer the compositions to canvas. His imagery has often been sourced from botanical textbooks, though the common motif of the dandelion, and other softer forms, seem to suggest children’s cartoons as well. The influence of Patrick Caulfield acknowledged by Morrison not only provides a precedent for his own linear style but also suggests his understanding of imagery as highly mediated; this is clearly relevant to Morrison’s treatment of landscape, since the genre is commonly associated with a sense of authenticity and direct contact with nature. Morrison also produced lithographs and large-scale wall paintings: ...

Reference Entry.  307 words. 

Subjects: Metalwork ; Painting ; Prints and Printmaking ; 20th-Century Art ; Contemporary Art

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