September 09 – November 1, 2019 | All My Relations Arts
September 20 – November 8, 2019 | Two Rivers Gallery
Changing Horizons will commemorate the 100th birthday of George Morrison by celebrating his influence and exploring the artistic dilemma of identity politics. George Morrison was, in his own words, “an artist who happened to be Indian.” He was born September 30, 1919 in Chippewa City, MN, near Grand Portage. George spent time in New York City, on the east coast, and in France. His art was influenced by his surroundings; he was also influenced by the art movements and artists of his day. He was acquainted with other now well known abstract expressionists like Franz Kline, Jackson Pollock, and Willem de Kooning, though he is often left out of this narrative, instead categorized simply as a “Native American artist”, limiting his exposure to the greater art world.
American Indian artists are perceived and expected to create art that reflects a colonized version of “Indian art”. The limitations formed by this imposed narrative affect the success and exposure of American Indian artists receive in the traditional art world. Artists like George Morrison refused to be relegated into a label, instead, choosing to create art that reflects identities that “just happen to be Native.”
An Artist First
Artists often create art that is a reflection and exploration of their identity and as American Indians, that identity innately comes out in the creation of work, but does it have to look like what society deems as “Native art?” That is the question this exhibition will be exploring. Our call for art is seeking to push the dialogue of what Native artists choose to create that upon first glance may not look like what the general public expects from “Native artists.” George Morrison was influenced by nature, landscapes, and the horizon. His method: abstract expressionism. This exhibition challenges artists to break out of the box imposed and showcase art that is universal.
“I have never tried to prove that I was Indian through my art. Yet there may remain, deeply hidden, some remote suggestion of the rock whence I was hewn…” George Morrison.
All My Relations Arts (AMRA) honors and strengthens relationships between contemporary American Indian artists and the living influence of preceding generations, between artists and audiences of all ethnic backgrounds, and between art and the vitality of the American Indian Cultural Corridor.
Two Rivers Gallery: Two Rivers Gallery is located at the Minneapolis American Indian Center along the American Indian Cultural Corridor. Their mission is to expose emerging Native artists by providing a space to exhibit work and nurture creativity. Two Rivers is an active space for the community to build relationships and to collaborate strengthening Native art and artistic voices within the Twin Cities.
Surrealist Landscape – Automatic Variation, 1984, George Morrison.
© Briand Morrison