Bruce Morrow talks about his ART
The prairie or desert theme that reveals it’s self in a lot of my paintings are a product of a wish to see the horizon -rather than the treed landscape of my home in the northwest. I started painting desert -scapes when I was living in Velarde, NM, a small town about halfway between Santa Fe and Taos, which- in terms of imagery- has stuck with me through the years. Color is very important to me in my paintings as an expression of that out of doors American look.
When I attended art school in the late 1960s, it was all about the figure - there was figure drawing in almost every classroom. Despite that fact, the emphasis on the students was to develop a new and contemporary look with a concept. My approach to this challenge was to employ humor.
I’ve always been drawn toward the story (or a narrative) in my pieces, and that’s where the figure comes in; I’ve tried painting just landscapes, but it’s a challenge to make them work on their own. When I add a figure, the piece seems to make more sense and it sort of comes alive. Then, I can capture a moment or a situation that I think lots of people can relate to, as in a-“I know what he’s thinking” or “I know that feeling” kind of moment. My dancers came out of a desire to romanticize the narrative, dogs add to the familiar in the narrative. I seem to need all the company I can get.
My western themes represent a certain sense of Americanism -and the nostalgia of the frontier; the figures in these scenes are the western “Everyman” -all his hopes and investment, up to the whims of wind and time.
I hope you can join me in a narrative that is reflective but forward looking and also wryly humorous.