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Cordy Ryman and Brandon Morse in Concurrent Solo Exhibitions at Conner Contemporary Art
Brandon Morse, A Charged Shape (video still), 2010, single channel video on blu-ray, continuous loop. © Brandon Morse, Courtesy Conner Contemporary Art.
WASHINGTON, DC.- Conner Contemporary Art presents two concurrent solo exhibitions featuring painted sculptural assemblages by Cordy Ryman and real-time generative digital work by Brandon Morse.

In Cordy Ryman’s first solo exhibition with the gallery, he presents a new series of playful works created with paint, wood, metal, Velcro and scraps recycled from his studio floor. Ryman, whose New York solo show was identified this fall as “one of the sleepers of the season” by Roberta Smith, is known for continuous experimentation in constructing, altering, and reconstructing painted geometric forms.

As Ryman intuitively responds to the contours and material qualities of his media, he envisions the eventual habitation of his works on surfaces in architectural environments. The show title, “Windowboxing” (i.e., the solid border that wraps around a tv image when a widescreen picture is refit into a narrower format), suggests how the artist’s adaptive process may shape our perceptual experience. Ryman’s installations demonstrate this point. In “Windowboxing,” an expansive pattern of rectangular wood frames climbs across the surface of the longest wall inside the gallery, and, outside, in “Kamco Wave,” an array of boards wraps around a corner to engulf part of the courtyard. Each of these sculptures effects an improbable monumental presence in its context, challenging our ordinary sense of proportion and altering our perception of space.

Ryman’s smaller-scale works engage with their surroundings through manipulations of shape, color and light. The thin, wedge-shaped “Red Fade Corner” punctuates the space where two walls of the gallery meet, while wall-mounted pieces color adjacent wall surfaces, as in the case of “Yellow Pink Halo” which reflects pink light, and “Reverse Scrap K,” which casts angular shadows. Through finding and making, Ryman explores sculpture and painting as material interactions that give rise to a constant state of becoming. We discover, as we explore with him, that each act and object can become the inspiration for a new idea, physical possibility, or way of seeing.

Previous group exhibitions include Aberrant Abstraction, Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art (Overland Park, KS), One More, Esbjerg Museum of Modern Art (Esbjerg, Denmark) and Greater New York 2005 at P.S. 1 Contemporary Arts Center (Long Island City, NY). His work is included in the Microsoft Collection (Redmond, WA) and the Rubell Family Collection (Miami, FL).

In “High Pressure System,” his third solo exhibition with the gallery, Brandon Morse presents a series of new real-time generative digital videos examining large scale naturally occurring phenomena. The chaos and complexity of climatic and geological events continually inspire Morse to apply sets of variables to create imagery-producing systems which he considers as analogues to human sociological conditions.

“For this exhibition, I've created a series of pieces in which these forces serve as allegory for the weather of the human state: explosive, inherently unstable, often at odds with itself and always seemingly on the edge of self-destruction,” Morse explains.

The artist builds coded systems with computer software, setting in place turbulent conditions to generate virtual ecosystems that appear to exist in a constant state of flux. Morse’s manipulations result in visualizations of volatile processes as they happen.

Light points conjoin and disperse in “A Charged Shape,” adjusting repeatedly to random unseen forces. In “Amblyopia” (i.e., lazy eye, or inability to see details), competing cloud-shaped forms alternately emerge and expand until they are churned under and subsumed by mysterious pressures. Perturbing the balance between creation and destruction, Morse invites us to enter new pictorial microcosms as they unfold in real time before our eyes.

Morse has recently exhibited in “abstract abstract - the systematized world,” NODE10 Festival, Frankfurter Kunstverein, Frankfurt, Germany and “Everywhere You Come From,” TorinOver '08, Palafukas, Torino, Italy.






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