Corbett vs. Dempsey is pleased to open the fall season with Party Cut, an exhibition of work by Rebecca Morris.
Based in her hometown of Los Angeles, Morris is an abstract painter of uncommon inventive powers. Her large canvases incorporate drawn elements—linear gesture, pattern, intimations of depth—but in a distinctly painterly manner, with great sensitivity to facture and tonality. Indeed, drawing has always been a significant part of Morris's process; she periodically takes time out to execute a body of drawings, and these highly coloristic works refresh and inspire her painting. In her first exhibition at Corbett vs. Dempsey, Morris presents several stunning new paintings, contrasted with a survey of drawings dating back to the period in the mid 1990s, when she had just graduated from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Dazzling and often quite humorous, Morris's drawings show her special manner of using formal means to prod and pry at other kinds of meaning, be they connotative, emotional, or literal. Blocks of color, splatter, loose grids of varying line weight, washes and deft use of resist, occasional words and dates spelled in sweeping strokes – these are works that span available techniques and materials for potency and deliver the goods. The paintings are utterly delicious, compiling fragments into a constellation or luring with the possibility of resolution, then holding out, like a dissonant last chord.
Rebecca Morris's recent exhibitions include Southafternoon, at Kunsthalle Lingen, Germany (traveling to Bonnefanten Museum, Maastrict, Holland in 2014) and an upcoming solo show at LAXART in L.A. In 2005, she was the subject of a major solo show at the Renaissance Society; this is her first exhibition in Chicago since then.