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Book Launch + Signing

Letters: Michael Morris and Concrete Poetry

PAST - Saturday, December 12, 2016, 2-4 pm

Kardosh Projects, 2423 Granville Street, Vancouver

Join us in celebrating the publication of Letters: Michael Morris and Concrete Poetry, co-published with Black Dog Publishing, UK. This richly illustrated book includes essays by Jamie Hilder, David MacWilliam, Michael Turner, Scott Watson and William Wood, and features a chronology of Morris’s prolific practice since the mid-1960s. It follows the 2012 exhibition of the same name that was held at the Belkin Art Gallery, which focused on a series of large-scale paintings with inset mirrors that Morris made in 1969—his last paintings until the early 1980s—brought together at the Belkin for the first time since then. The Belkin’s show presented the paintings in the context of contemporaneous examples of Concrete Poetry, a practice that had influenced Morris and catalyzed his move into other forms of art making such as sculpture, photography and performance, examples of which were also represented in the exhibition. This book focuses on Morris’s activity in the late 1960s and his “last paintings,” in an attempt to restore them to an art historical context.

In his roles as an artist, curator and educator, Michael Morris has been a key figure of the West Coast art scene since the 1960s and his contribution to the development of Vancouver as a contemporary art city has been profound. He was central to the “scene with no scene” that emerged in the late 1960s and was a leader in the turn to the conceptual in the early 1970s, co-founding Image Bank in 1969 and the Western Front in 1973. In 1981, Morris and Vincent Trasov accepted a residency in Berlin as guests of the D.A.A.D. Visiting Artist program. He stayed for 13 years, joining the ex-pat art community in what was West Berlin, returning to Victoria, BC in 1994. Morris is the recipient of the 2015 Audain Prize for Lifetime Achievement and the 2011 Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts in recognition of his achievement and outstanding contribution to contemporary art in Canada.

Michael Morris and exhibition co-curator and editor Scott Watson will be in attendance. Special launch pricing will be in effect.

For further information please contact: Jana Tyner at jana.tyner@ubc.ca,
tel: (604) 822-1389, or fax: (604) 822-6689