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Don Morris

A retired plastic surgeon, Morris has been interested in contemporary art all of his life. An ardent art collector, he has chaired the contemporary art and acquisition committee at a major museum and has been involved in numerous gallery and museum activities for decades. Morris has created works of art throughout his life using various mediums. After retiring from his surgical practice in 2002, Morris decided to put his refined artistic skills to use as a full-time artist. Morris is represented in several prestigious art galleries in the United States and abroad and has quickly risen to international recognition. His art is represented also in many solo and multiple exhibitions and his art is in numerous major collections worldwide.

Inspired by the modern works of Armand, Cesar and Chamberlain, he embarked on a similar path with his series of the art of deconstruction. Using comic books as the medium, Morris deconstructs and artistically reinvents the comic book into multi-dimensional colorful and textural pieces of art. From a distance, one sees a mass of bright colors and waves of patterns. As one traverses around the art, intriguing and surprising shadows are seen. Upon closer inspection, a story unfolds as the images of super heroes and characters of the comic book can be seen flying, struggling, and climbing in small fragments and vignettes. Word bubbles from the comic book text are carefully selected and are clearly visible throughout the pieces.

don morrisMorris named his comic construction series “Searching for Heroes.” This theme evolved from man’s fascination for “super heroes” who fight the evils and wrong doing in a world of indifference and chaos. In our culture, this theme exists not only in comic books but also in early radio adventure series and old Western movies. The popularity of this theme continues today in the remake of such movies as Batman, Spiderman and Captain America, to name a few. “There are a multitude of heroes in every facet of life,” said Morris. “Many are well known to us all, however in reality, the vast majority of current day heroes operate incognito as the common man, who diligently strives to help their fellow man and society on a daily basis. They do their work quietly in a dedicated fashion without fanfare, reward, or recognition. These are the real heroes in the world and they live inside us all.”

From a distance the viewer sees only the interplay of colors and texture, but as the viewer is drawn closer, the super heroes of the comic book fly, struggle, and climb before us in small fragments and vignettes. Word bubbles from the comic book text are clearly visible throughout the pieces and the viewer can read the dialog of our action heroes. The viewer, almost without exception, also experiences a spontaneous, delightful, impulse for a tactile inspection of the uniformly undulating surface of gentle peaks and curves in the folds of its comic book pages. – Bill Bush, Huffington post Arts & Culture

Don Morris was born in New Orleans in 1935 and obtained his doctorate degree at Louisiana State University. He recently moved his studio from Coral Gables, Florida, to Rancho Santa Fe, California. “Although there are many aspects of my work that can be intellectualized, the fundamentals still require that inner aesthetic sense. But in the final analysis, it is the viewer that deems my work either ‘art’ or ‘folly.’ I ply my trade before a thousand critics.”