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Visiting Artists Program (VAP) Resource Guides

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The Visiting Artists Program resource guides contain upcoming speakers' biographies, articles, video and audio content, related publications in the Flaxman Library, and additional online resources. These guides may be used in the classroom in preparation for the event, research, or post-lecture discussion.

Rebecca Morris: Distinguished Alumni Lecture Series
Tuesday, October 3, 6:00–7:30 p.m. CT
The Art Institute of Chicago, Fullerton Hall, 111 S. Michigan Ave.

This event will be live captioned by Communication Access Realtime Translation services.

Join us for a lecture by Rebecca Morris followed by an audience Q&A.


Photographic portrait of Rebecca Morris.

Rebecca Morris (MFA 1994) has dedicated her 30-year career to the exploration of abstraction. Her work has taken basic elements like stroke, surface, and frame to question the underlying pretenses of abstract painting, exposing the tensions between the flat surface of the work and the painting as a discrete object. Recurring motifs such as fragmented patterns and distorted grids further complicate her work against the larger history of conceptual artists that have used precise geometry to delineate visual space. Variously associated with the schools of Pattern and Decoration and Supports/Surfaces, Morris’s work has steadfastly refused placement into one clear category or movement.

In her practice, Morris often thins oil paint to the extent that it resembles watercolor. By repeating concerted, expressive brush marks across subtle, consistent grounds, she creates patterns that evoke soil samples, bacterial cultures, aerial landscapes, or the glyphs and syntax of an as-yet-undiscovered language. In some works, Morris divides these mottled autonomous expanses of charcoal, ochre, azure, and purple with sturdy grids and frames composed entirely of silver and gold enamel spray paint. Many of her paintings feature variations on a jagged, irregular motif that she refers to as the “lobster claw.” More than all other colors, Morris reveres red, having set for herself the goal of painting “the ultimate red painting.”

Morris is the subject of a solo exhibition opening September 2023 at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. The show, curated by Jamillah James, is traveling from the Institute of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, and looks at the past 21 years of Morris’s practice. Other significant shows include the Blaffer Art Museum, Houston (2019); Bonnefanten museum, Maastricht, Netherlands (2014); The Renaissance Society, Chicago (2005); and 356 Mission and LAXART in Los Angeles. Morris’s work has been included in group shows at the Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus (2018); the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (2016); and the Whitney Biennial, New York (2014). Her work is in various public collections, including The Hirshhorn Museum, Washington, D.C.; The Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; The Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego; The Art Institute of Chicago; The Cleveland Museum of Art; Sammlung Goetz, Munich, Germany; Bonnefanten museum, Maastricht, Netherlands; and the DePaul Art Museum, Chicago. She is the recipient of awards and fellowships from The John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation, California Community Foundation Fellowship for Visual Art, and the Art Matters Foundation, among others.

Presented in partnership with SAIC Alumni Engagement. 

Portrait credit: Rebecca Morris. Photo: Flying Studio. Courtesy of the artist and Regen Projects, Los Angeles.

Gallery Representation

Corbett vs. Dempsey
Regen Projects
Bortolami Gallery


The peculiar appeal of Rebecca Morris’ paintings, on view in L.A.*
Christopher Knight | Los Angeles Times | November 19, 2022 
*This is a library resource that requires ARTIC login

In Los Angeles, Rebecca Morris and Peter Bradley’s Art ‘About Nothing’*
Jonathan Griffin | New York Times | November 3, 2022 
*This is a library resource that requires ARTIC login

Difference and Discontinuity: A Review of Rebecca Morris at Corbett vs. Dempsey
Alan Pocaro | Newcity Art | April 18, 2022 

Rebecca Morris
Julia Ribeiro | Artforum | September 2020

Perverse Formalism: Rebecca Morris
Camila McHugh | Mousse Magazine | July 4, 2020

Rebecca Morris
Claire Phillips | this is tomorrow | May 26, 2020


Shop Talk: Rebecca Morris
Side Street Projects | 2019 | Please note this podcast does not provide transcripts

Inherent Structure artist Rebecca Morris
Wexner Center | 2018 | Please note this podcast does not provide transcripts

NO. 249: Rebecca Morris, Roy Dowell
The Modern Art Notes Podcast | August 11, 2016 | Please note this podcast does not provide transcripts



Rebecca Morris: 2001–2022 at Institute of Contemporary Art Los Angeles
Rebecca Morris: 2001–2022 (October 1, 2022 – January 15, 2023) presents a 21-year survey of Los Angeles-based painter Rebecca Morris, an artist best known for her large-scale paintings and inventive approach to composition, color, and gesture.

Rebecca Morris: The Ache of Bright at the Blaffer Art Museum
The Ache of Bright (January 11 – March 16, 2019) features a selection of ten major paintings made in the last four years, including newly conceived constellations of color and texture. 

Visiting Artists Program Lecture Recordings from the Archive
SAIC Visiting Artists Program video and audio lecture recordings (1977–present.) Available with SAIC login credentials.

SAIC Digital Collections: Visiting Artists Program
SAIC Visiting Artists Program publicity archive and audio recordings (197798).