Artist Statement

 

“An artist makes art to tell what life feels like.”

-Marvin Bell

For me art making is an attempt to identify with one’s emotions. The need to create work stems from the drive to make a connection and to communicate. I strive towards communicating how natural cycles of the world around us correspond to our life experiences. I take what I know, what I have learned from living with a chronic illness, and translate it into a more universal language that steps outside of my unique experiences. The work focuses on capturing different stages of growth and renewal within an environment that exhibits elements of decomposition and decay. Ambiguous landscape and flower imagery serve as metaphors for human experience.

Literature and poetry are a powerful influence in my work. In the provocative writing of Gabriel Garcia Marquez in Love in the Time of Cholera, I find passages and phrases that evoke images. In Susan Stewart’s book of poetry The Forest, I see my own images reflected in her words, words that speak of the elusiveness of life, of illness, and of death. She writes about human experience and uses nature as her metaphor.

The objects I have chosen to work with are flowers and hands. A flower suggests fragility and connection to new life. I am attracted to the aesthetic form of the flower because of the transformations it undergoes in various stages of growth and deterioration. It can be awkward, beautiful, and even grotesque. The use of the hand as object in my work is often less visible: the bones of a hand emerge from their environment to stroke the center of a flower, or in the shadow of a flower is the image of a hand scurrying across a page.

I began working with this imagery in a body of work in consisting of a series of black and white intaglio prints. These images culminated in the image Sunflower V, a 36” x 28” print finished in 1999. I then turned to exploring these same ideas through the use of multiple color plate imagery in intaglio, and through photolithography with a digital component. The multiple color imagery allowed for spatial shifts and layering of planes that was not possible in the single plate images. The lithography allowed me to explore another aspect of the work altogether, the nature of shadows themselves. This led to a level of abstraction that was entirely new for me. The images were created by taking photographs of shadows of flowers, scanning them into a computer, manipulating the forms, printing onto acetate, then transferring them to photo litho plates.

In 2005, I began exploring the use of new materials and techniques. I began combining printed imagery from both digital and traditional sources with painted imagery on canvas. Through this process I have been able to achieve a physical layering of planes and depth that allows me to create an environment that can be explored layer-by-layer exposing hidden forms beneath other forms. This has allowed me to contrast the abstractness of an environment against the concreteness of a form.

As the work progressed I began to work on more box shaped canvases to allow the work to take on a more sculptural presence. Currently, I have begun experimenting using these techniques on wooden boxes that I carve in relief in order to further expand the physical depth and sculptural elements of the work.

Artist Biography

Education:

MA in Art, MFA in Printmaking, Ceramics minor

School of Art and Art History, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa

BFA in Printmaking and Ceramics

School of Art and Architecture, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan

Magna cum laude

Awards, Fellowships, and Grants:

Materials Award, The Boston Printmakers 2001 North American Print Exhibition, Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts

Teaching Assistantship in Printmaking, School of Art and Art History, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa

Juror’s Award, Prints U.S.A. 1999, Springfield Art Museum, Springfield, Missouri

Research Assistantship in Printmaking, School of Art and Art History, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa.

Fine Arts Council Grant, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa.

Leola Bergmann Fellowship, School of Art and Art History, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa

Wilhelm and Jane Bodine Fellowship, School of Art and Art History, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa

BFA Award, School of Art and Architecture, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan

Palazzola Memorial Award, Student Awards Exhibition, School of Art and Architecture, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan

Current Position:

Associate Professor, Department of Fine and Applied Arts, Curry College, Milton, Massachusetts

  • Structure and teach a variety of beginner and advanced classes, such as Introduction to Fine Arts, Drawing, Basic Design, Three-Dimensional Design, Studio: Drawing & Painting, Computer Art, Graphic Design, Design Concepts, Sculpture, and Portfolio and Presentation.
  • Make significant contributions to the development of courses and curriculum.
  • Chaired Educational Technology Committee.
  • Serve on college-wide committees.
  • Implement, design and teach new courses.
  •  Assist students with their independent studios.
  • Supervise internships.
  • Organize events like Careers in the Arts, a department sponsored event to assist students in making career decisions.
  • Work with students to produce promotional materials for the student exhibition and other campus events.

 Exhibition History:

2010 Faculty Exhibit, Student Center Gallery, Curry College, Milton, Massachusetts (Group/invitational exhibit)

2009 Thirteenth Annual Boston International Fine Art Show, The Cyclorama, Boston Center for the Arts, Boston, Massachusetts (Group/invitational exhibit)

2009 Body and Soul: A Benefit for Aid for Cancer Research, Bromfield Gallery, Boston, Massachusetts (Group/invitational exhibit)

2006 Three, EES Arts, Duxbury Art Complex, Duxbury, Massachusetts (Group/invitational exhibit)

2004 The Visual Arts Faculty Art Exhibit, Parents’ Lounge, Hafer Academic Building, Curry College, Milton, Massachusetts (Group/invitational exhibit)

2002 Janet Fredericks – paintings, drawings, prints/Iris Morehouse – prints/Lee Stice – ceramic vessels, The Davis Gallery, Wellfleet, Massachusetts (Group/invitational exhibit)

2002 The Visual Arts Faculty Art Exhibit, Parents’ Lounge, Hafer Academic Building, Curry College, Milton, Massachusetts (Group/invitational exhibit)

2001 The Visual Arts Faculty Art Exhibit, Parents’ Lounge, Hafer Academic Building, Curry College, Milton, Massachusetts (Group/invitational exhibit)

2001 Graham Ashton – paintings, sculpture/Iris Morehouse – prints, The Davis Gallery, Wellfleet, Massachusetts (Group/invitational exhibit)

2001 Experimental Etching Studio/EES Arts, The Lancaster Museum, Lancaster, Pennsylvania (Group/invitational exhibit)

2001 Duality Plus Seven, Newbury Collage, Newbury, Massachusetts (Group/invitational exhibit)

2001 The Boston Printmakers 2001 North American Print Exhibition, Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts. Catalog (Juried exhibit)

2000 Contemplation: Prints by Iris G. Morehouse, Eve Drewelowe Gallery, School of Art and Art History, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa (Solo exhibit)

2000 Sasha Richter – Paintings/Alan Morehouse – Sculpture/Iris G. Morehouse – Prints, The Davis Gallery, Wellfleet, Massachusetts (Group/invitational exhibit)

2000 Altering Tradition, Summit Street Gallery, Iowa City, Iowa (Group/invitational exhibit)

2000 Graphische Arbeiten Der Lehrenden Der School of Art and Graduate Printmakers, Galerie im Fenster, Seminarstrasse 33, Im Hause Des Faches Kunst, Grosse Rosestrasse (Group/invitational exhibit)

2000 MFA Exhibition 1999-2000, The University of Iowa Museum of Art, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa. (Group/invitational exhibit)

2000 New Work: from the University of Iowa, ARC Gallery, Chicago, Illinois.Sasha Richter – Paintings/Alan Morehouse – Sculpture/Iris G. Morehouse – Prints, The Davis Gallery, Wellfleet, Massachusetts. (Group/invitational exhibit)

2000 Americas 2000, Northwest Art Center, Minot State University, Minot, North Dakota. (Juried exhibit)

1999 Prints & Drawings by Iris G. Morehouse, Eve Drewelowe Gallery, School of Art and Art History, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa. (Solo exhibit)

1999 A New Chautauqua: A Group Show, The Davis Gallery, Wellfleet, Massachusetts. (Group/invitational exhibit)

1999 Ceramics/Graduate Students/University of Iowa, The Marvin Cone Gallery, Coe College, Cedar Rapids, Iowa. (Group/invitational exhibit)

1999 Printmaking Graduate Students from the University of Iowa, Boyd Tower, University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics, Iowa City, Iowa. (Group/invitational exhibit)

1999 The Printed Image, Summit Street Gallery, Iowa City, Iowa. (Group/invitational exhibit)

1998 Delta National Small Prints Exhibition, Fine Arts Center Gallery, Arkansas State University, Jonesboro, Arkansas. Catalog (Juried exhibit)

1998 Mid America Print Council Juried Members Exhibition, Chidlaw Gallery, Art Academy of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio. (Juried exhibit)

1997 Mid America Print Council Juried Members Exhibition, Art & Design Gallery, University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas. (Juried exhibit)

1997 SIAB ’97, 3rd International Student Art Biennial, Museum of the City of Skopje, Republic of Macedonia. Catalog (Juried exhibit)

1995 Prints by Iris G. Morehouse, The Burro, Ann Arbor, Michigan (Solo exhibit)

1994 The International Art Exhibition of Student Works, Nagoya Institute of the Arts, Japan. Catalog (Juried exhibit)

Conferences Attended:

CAA NYC 2000, 88th College Art Association Annual Conference, Hilton Towers, New York, New York.

Different Stokes: International Woodfiring Conference, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa.

Printmaker’s Charge, 27th Annual Southern Graphics Council Conference, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona.

Pressing Issues, Third Biennial Mid-America Print Council Conference, Art Academy of Cincinnati and North Kentucky University, Cincinnati, Ohio.

A Celebration of Print, 26th Annual Southern Graphics Council Conference,

Ohio University, Athens, Ohio.

1997 National Conference for Education of the Ceramic Arts, Las Vegas, Nevada.

Bibliography:

The Boston Printmakers 2001 North American Print Exhibition, Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts, illus. p. 16. (exhibition catalog)

“Frighteningly Anthropomorphic,” The Icon, Iowa City, Iowa, July 13, 2000, p. 9.

“Progressive Prints,” New Bay Times, Deale, Maryland, March 3, 1999, p.21.

“Printmaking Display at AACC,” Capital Entertainment, Annapolis, Maryland, Friday, April 2, 1999, p. 22.

Prints U.S.A. 1999, Springfield Art Museum, Springfield, Missouri, 1999, illus. p. 16. (exhibition catalog)

Pressed and Pulled VIII National Juried Printmaking Exhibition, Blackbridge Hall Gallery and The Museum and Archives of Georgia Education, Georgia College and State University, Milledgeville, Georgia, 1999, illus. (exhibition catalog)

“Ceramics Exhibition on display at UI,” Iowa City Press Citizen, Iowa City, Iowa, July 24, 1999, p. 6B.

1998 Delta National Small Prints Exhibition, Fine Arts Center Gallery, Arkansas State University, Jonesboro, Arkansas 1998, illus. p. 35. (exhibition catalog)

“Prints on Exhibit at Summit Street Gallery,” Iowa City Press Citizen, Iowa City, Iowa, April 2, 1998.

SIAB ’97, 3rd International Student Art Biennial, Museum of the City of Skopje, Republic of Macedonia, 1997, illus. (exhibition catalog)

“B.F.A. Awards Citations,” Visualization, University of Michigan School of Art, Ann Arbor, Michigan, Fall 1995, p. 10, illus.

The International Art Exhibition of Student Works, Nagoya Institute of the Arts, Japan, 1994, illus. (exhibition catalog)

Collections:

Joy Kant Fine Art, Waban, Massachusetts

University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, Iowa City, Iowa

University of Iowa Printmaking Department Archives, Iowa City, Iowa

University of Michigan Printmaking Department, Ann Arbor, Michigan

Memberships/Affiliations:

College Art Association

EES Arts

Mid America Print Council

Southern Graphics Council

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