Morgan Fisher. Exterior and Interior Color Beauty. January 11th through February 22nd, 2014. Opening reception Saturday, January 11th, 6:00 to 8:00 pm
China Art Objects Galleries is pleased to present Exterior and Interior Color Beauty, an exhibition of ten recent paintings by Morgan Fisher, his fourth one-person exhibition with the gallery.
The paintings are enlarged facsimiles of paint chips for colors for domestic exteriors and interiors in Exterior and Interior Color Beauty, a booklet produced in about 1935 by General Houses, Inc., a manufacturer of prefabricated houses founded by the artist’s father, Howard T. Fisher.
The exhibition realizes what Morgan Fisher understood when he found the booklet in his father’s files many years ago, that the groups of chips were paintings ready-made.
The paintings are in two groups, exterior colors and interior colors. This is the first exhibition of the paintings of the exterior colors, of which there are five.
The paintings of the interior colors are a set of five from the exhibition Interior Color Beauty at Bortolami Gallery, New York, in September 2013. On that occasion the artist and Bortolami Gallery published a limited edition facsimile of Exterior and Interior Color Beauty, which can be consulted at the desk.
This exhibition, although including only some of the paintings of interior colors, is the first to show paintings based on the exterior and interior colors together.
The colors in the booklet were chosen by a color consultant to make combinations that are pleasing in themselves and furthermore are coordinated with each other. The coordinated color combinations make a sequence that produces what the booklet calls “color-flow” for an entire house. The booklet presents five such sequences, and this exhibition is the first to show one of these sequences.
The paintings of exterior colors each consist of a main color and a choice of several trim colors.
The combinations of the interior colors, unlike the possible pairings of colors for exteriors, do not offer choices. The colors and their combinations were chosen to suit five specific kinds of rooms. According with the booklet’s five color sequences, for each kind of room there are five color combinations.
In this exhibition the paintings of the interior colors are coordinated with the fifth painting of exterior colors. These paintings together make a sequence that creates “color flow” from the outside of a house throughout its interior. Further, the painting of exterior colors offers four possible pairs of colors, creating with the same color combinations for the interior four different color sequences for an entire house.
The booklet Exterior and Interior Color Beauty represents the wish to rationalize relations among color, expressing in the realm of the decorative the wish of General Houses, Inc. to rationalize the design and production of housing. At the root of such rationalization is the imperative to limit choice, to simplify, to standardize. Morgan Fisher’s wish to make work that escapes the pitfalls of composition expresses similar principles, of which the paintings in this exhibition are examples.
Morgan Fisher was born in 1942 in Washington, D.C. He studied art history at Harvard College and then film in Los Angeles. His early work was in film, and more recently he has made works on paper, photographs, paintings, and sculptures.
His recent one-person exhibitions at public institutions were at the Generali Foundation, Vienna, and Aspen Art Museum in 2012; Raven Row, London, and the Museum Abteiberg, Mönchengladbach, in 2011; and Portikus, Frankfurt, in 2009.
A collection of his writings was published by Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König, Cologne, in 2012.
He will be in the 2014 Whitney Biennial, the third Biennial to include him. He lives and works in Los Angeles.