Exhibitions 2022: Two of a Kind: Abelardo Morell and Anthony Fisher

Exhibitions 2022: Two of a Kind: Abelardo Morell and Anthony Fisher
Two of a Kind: Abelardo Morell and Anthony Fisher

February 2 – March 10, 2022

Left: Abelardo Morell, Paint #16, 2021, archival pigment print, 45”x60” Right: Anthony Fisher, The Light of Day, 2021, oil on canvas, 78”x96”
Left: Abelardo Morell, Paint #16, 2021, archival pigment print, 45”x60” Right: Anthony Fisher, The Light of Day, 2021, oil on canvas, 78”x96”

Opening Reception: AHA! Night, Thursday February 10, 6–8 pm | Artist Talk: 6:30 pm
Closing Reception: AHA! Night, Thursday, March 10, 6–8 pm

Reserve your free ticket for the opening and closing
Facebook + Instagram @UMassDartmouthGalleries
Contact: Viera Levitt, Gallery Director and Exhibition Curator

The UMass Dartmouth University Art Gallery at Star Store Campus, Downtown New Bedford has the pleasure to invite you to the exhibition titled, Two of a Kind, featuring large scale photographs of paint by Abelardo Morell in conversation with paintings by Anthony Fisher.

This exhibition presents two creative approaches that focus on the abstract image – Abelardo Morell’s incredibly lush and sensual photographs of fresh paint frozen in time with the help of light, fast exposure and flash, and Anthony Fisher’s ingeniously captured lines and shapes featured on layered, monochromatic abstract paintings.

Both Morell and Fisher share a restless urgency to invent novel ways to play with traditional media, subjects, and methods. In their respective studios in the same creative community just outside of Boston, each pours their unique experimentation into their own patient and carefully crafted process. Results sometimes arrive as wonderful surprises transformed into bold work that the visitor can almost enter – inspiring, open minded, and deeply creative. Abelardo Morell admires Anthony’s work because he, “like me, thinks a lot about how a picture is made. Subject matter for him is, of course, important, but it is within his working process that the subject emerges. Anthony has used all sorts of devices to make marks on the canvas – perhaps to get his ego out of the way a bit.”

Anthony Fisher’s studio process involves quirky and lumbering invented tools, physical struggle, gravity, chemistry, and physics to allow hundreds of marks to be thrown onto a canvas all at once. “My process is specifically designed for EXCESS – with so many visual ideas emerging at once, the overwhelmingly vast majority are discarded. I want the unexpected. My goal is to spark ideas that otherwise wouldn’t appear with a more deliberative, considered approach,” says Fisher.

Abelardo Morell explains his admiration for the subject matter of his photographs, “When I visit museums, my eyes often take me first to the painting galleries. I marvel at the surfaces of paintings, which contain their own visual dramas, often independent of any narrative or formal aspect of the work. A difference between us as a photographer and painter is that photographers normally start with the world, while painters begin with a blank canvas and end up at times with astonishing creations.” Morell’s photographs show “that substance on its way to drying – a stage that finished paintings can never retain. “I also use other lighting sources pointed at a low angle to increase the raking light effects on the thick paint surface. I like the translucent and geometric visual marriages achieved through this method. Because what I am making are not ‘paintings’ in their own right, I am able to quote and crop discrete small paint details to make them play a big role in the final picture.”

Created specifically for this exhibition and presented at the gallery’s entrance is another visual surprise that underlines the connection between these two artists, neighbors and friends – a photograph of Abelardo Morell titled, “Paint: After Anthony Fisher’s 2021 Painting ‘Some Will Still Be Standing’, 2022” right next to the actual painting that inspired this work.

Free tickets are available for the opening and closing reception during AHA! Night, Thursday February 10, 6–8 pm (Artist Talk starts at 6:30 pm) and AHA! Night, Thursday, March 10, 6–8 pm at umassdartmouthgalleries.eventbrite.com. The exhibition is open free of charge between February 2 – March 10, 2022. No reservation required to visit the gallery daily from 9 am to 6 pm.

Anthony Fisher
Anthony Fisher, Did He Really See That?, 2021, oil on canvas, 58” X 84"

About Anthony Fisher

Anthony Fisher received his MFA from Yale University and his BFA from Carnegie-Mellon University. Nationally, he exhibits at Galerie Mourlot in New York City. His work has been reviewed in Art News, Art Critical, and Painting Perceptions. Anthony lives and paints just outside Boston in a community with other visual artists in what was once an elementary school. He describes himself as a distinct “outlier” in his family of scientists… always messy, rambunctious, and playing games with paint. He has been a university teacher for thirty years.
More information: www.anthonyfisher.net

Abelardo Morell
Abelardo Morell, Paint #9, 2021, photography, archival inkjet print

About Abelardo Morell

Abelardo Morell was born in Havana, Cuba in 1948. He immigrated to the United States with his parents in 1962. Morell received his undergraduate degree from Bowdoin College and his MFA from The Yale University School of Art. He has received an honorary degree from Bowdoin College in 1997 and from Lesley University in 2014. He was professor of Photography at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design in Boston from 1983 to 2010.

His publications include a photographic illustration of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1998) by Dutton Children’s Books, A Camera in a Room (1995) by Smithsonian Press, A Book of Books (2002) and Camera Obscura (2004) by Bulfinch Press and Abelardo Morell (2005), published by Phaidon Press. The Universe Next Door (2013), published by The Art Institute of Chicago; Tent-Camera (2018), published by Nazraeli Press; Flowers for Lisa (2018), published by Abrams Books.

Abelardo Morell has received a number of awards and grants, which include a Guggenheim fellowship in 1994 and an Infinity Award in Art from ICP in 2011. In November 2017, he received a Lucie Award for achievement in fine art. His work has been collected and shown in many galleries, institutions, and museums, including the Museum of Modern Art, The Whitney Museum of American Art, the Metropolitan Art Museum in New York, The Chicago Art Institute, The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, The Houston Museum of Art, The Boston Museum of Fine Art, The Victoria & Albert Museum, and several other museums in the United States and abroad. A 2013-14 retrospective of his work was organized jointly by the Art Institute of Chicago, The Getty in Los Angeles, and The High Museum in Atlanta.
More information: www.abelardomorell.net

Abelardo Morell’s work courtesy of Krakow Witkin Gallery, Boston, MA and Edwynn Houk Gallery, New York, NY.