Sarah Morris (b. 1967, London, U.K.)
Sarah Morris is an internationally recognized painter and filmmaker, known for her complex abstractions, which play with architecture and the psychology of urban environments. Morris views her paintings as parallel to her films - both trace urban, social and bureaucratic topologies. In both these media, she explores the psychology of the contemporary city and its architecturally encoded politics. Morris studied at Brown University where she received a BA in 1989, and at Cambridge. She was a participant in the Whitney Independent Study Program.
Sarah Morris lives and works in New York and London. She received the Aurelie Nemours Prize in 2020, the Joan Mitchell Foundation Painting Award in 2001, and in 1999-2000 was an American Academy Award Berlin Prize Fellow.
She has exhibited extensively internationally, with solo exhibitions at White Cube, London (2019); Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing (2018); Espoo Museum of Modern Art, Espoo, Finland (2017); Kunsthalle Wien, Vienna (2016); Museum Leuven, Leuven (2015); Fondation Louis Vuitton, Paris (2014); Kunsthalle Bremen, Bremen (2013); the Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, Ohio (2012); Museo d’Arte Moderna di Bologna (2009); Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt (2009); Fondation Beyeler, Riehen/Basel (2008); the Museum Boijmans van Beuningen, Rotterdam (2006); Moderna Museet, Stockholm (2005); Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2005); Kestner Gesellschaft, Hannover (2005); Kunstforeningen, Copenhagen (2004); Miami MOCA (2002); Hirshhorn Museum, Washington D.C. (2002); and Nationalgalerie im Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin (2001). Morris has upcoming solo exhibitions at the Deichtorhallen Hamburg and Kunstmuseum Krefeld in 2023, and at the Kunstmuseum Bern and Kunstmuseum Stuttgart in 2024.
Sarah Morris’ work is in many public collections such as British Council, London; Centre Pompidou, Paris; Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Hamburger Bahnhof, Berlin; Musee d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris; Museum of Modern Art, New York; Museum fur Moderne Kunst, Frankfurt; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Tate Modern, London; and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.
What’s the dynamic between the films and the paintings? All I can tell you is it’s always all going on at the same time. I don’t know if you can make a linear, causal connection, but there is obviously a link. There are linguistic connections between the titles. There are connections in terms of color and composition. And rhythm too—all of the films have this sort of relentless quality to them that’s slightly hypnotic. You can even look at the films as a study. On the other hand, sometimes we’ll do research for paintings and compositions for paintings, and it will lead me to a very specific space. The conversation goes both ways.
Sarah Morris in conversation with Taylor Dafoe, artnet news, 2019
1967 Born in the United Kingdom
1989 Graduates from Brown University with a Bachelor of Arts
1989-1990 participates in the Whitney Museum of American Art Independent Study program
1992 Morris has her first solo exhibition Citizens at Kunsthalle in New York
1998 First institutional show at Le Consortium in Dijon
Creates her first film Midtown
1999 Inaugural show with Petzel Gallery in New York
2000 Morris mounts major solo exhibition at Kunsthalle Zurich in Switzerland
2001 Awarded the Joan Mitchell Painting Award
2002 All of Morris’ films to date are shown at the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington DC
2005 A solo exhibition is mounted of Morris’ Los Angeles series at Kestner Gesellschaft, Hannover
2006 Morris installs the site-specific work Robert Towne at the Lever House in New York
2008 Morris installs the mural Black Beetle at the Fondation Beyler and exhibits paintings from her “Capital” and “Rings” series
2009 Museum fur Moderne Kunst hosts a comprehensive solo exhibition of Morris’ work titled Gemini Dressage. The exhibition included the debut of her film, Beijing, in Europe.
2012 Points on a Line debuts at the Wexner Center for the Arts in Columbus, Ohio
2013 Morris has three exhibitions premiering her “Rio” series at White Cube in London, Petzel Gallery in New York, and Kunsthalle Bremen in Germany.
2016 Museum Leuven hosts a major exhibition of Morris’ work in Belgium.
2018 Morris has her first institutional exhibition in China at the UCCA in Beijing.
2019 Debuts her 15th movie Sakura at the Nakanoshima Museum of Art in Osaka, Japan
2020 Awarded the Aurelie Nemours Prize
2023 Forthcoming institutional exhibitions at Deichtorhallen Hamburg and Nakanoshima Museum of Art in Osaka
2024 Solo exhibitions at museum include Kunstmuseum Bern and Kunstmuseum Stuttgart
Installation view, The Odysseus Factor, UCCA, Beijing, 2018
Installation view, Cloak and Dagger, Capitain Petzel, 2017
Installation View, Academia Militar, Petzel Gallery, 2013
Installation view, Robert Towne, Lever House, 2006
Installation view, Los Angeles, Kestner Gesellschaft, Hannover, 2005
Installation view, Rumjungle, White Cube, 2000
Installation view, Sarah Morris, Le Consortium, 1998
Installation view, Try God, Nicole Klagsbrun, 1994