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Artist Interview: Rita Morris

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Q&A With The Artist

Artist Interview: Rita Morris

What are your ear­li­est mem­o­ries relat­ed to art?
I can still see it now! My moth­er quite often had a can­vas and art palette on our kitchen table. I was amazed at the beau­ti­ful flow­ers she could make look so real!

How and when did you start becom­ing an artist yourself?
I was giv­en art lessons at an ear­ly age and was blessed to have as my teacher a very tal­ent­ed artist whose spe­cial­ty was draw­ing. His instruc­tion, com­bined with my artist moth­er’s love for paint­ing in oils, gave me a great foun­da­tion and a desire to cre­ate that has nev­er gone away.

What was the evo­lu­tion like toward find­ing your cur­rent voice and visu­al vocabulary?
It’s def­i­nite­ly been an excit­ing jour­ney — from the ear­ly stages of my work to the place where I am now. I have had the oppor­tu­ni­ty to study with and learn from some great artists! I will always take oppor­tu­ni­ties to grow and to exper­i­ment with dif­fer­ent tech­niques, but I tru­ly believe my sub­ject mat­ter will always be the Amer­i­can West.

What is your process like?
First, I like to “see” the idea in my mind, and then I spend time think­ing and rethink­ing it. I ask myself, “What do I want to show from this paint­ing?” Then the phys­i­cal work begins. Sketch­ing … REs­ketch­ing … and often more REs­ketch­ing! Next comes paint­ing … REpaint­ing … and final­ly … HOPING that I have por­trayed the emo­tions I want­ed the view­er to experience.

Is there any­thing from your artist state­ment that you wish to expound on, that you nor­mal­ly don’t have the chance to discuss?
It’s very impor­tant to me that those who view my work know that it’s all God! He gives the glo­ri­ous scenes to be cap­tured on can­vas and He gives the tal­ent to bring it to life.

What do you try to con­trol in your sur­faces, and what do you leave to chance?
I try to tell a sto­ry with each and every stroke of my brush­es and I leave it to the view­er to become a part of that sto­ry as he/she stands in front of a fin­ished work.

Where do you see your work going from here?
I hope to see it hang­ing on walls around the world!

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