Looking for something to do on a rainy (or scorching) day? Spend an afternoon indoors this August exploring the artwork of Ree Morton at The Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery at Skidmore College. Ree Morton: The Plant That Heals May Also Poison, opens August 10 and showcases the artist’s thoughtful and innovative contributions to the post-minimalist and feminist movements.
Visitors to the gallery will have the opportunity to study Morton’s work in a variety of mediums, including sculpture, drawing, painting, and installation art. Her pieces are associated with the post-minimalist and feminist movements, with their use of autobiographical content, bright colors, celastic (a moldable plastic/fabric), common modern items, feminine details, and humor.
Ree Morton (1936-1977) attended Skidmore from 1953 to 1956, earned a BFA from the University of Rhode Island in 1966, and graduated with an MFA from the Tyler School of Art in 1970. She was a teacher in Philadelphia and Chicago, and during her short career, her work was shown at the Whitney Museum of American Art, Artists Space, and the South Street Seaport Museum.
Morton’s work has been exhibited around the world since her untimely death in 1977. Ree Morton: The Plant That Heals May Also Poison had previously been on display at The Institute of Contemporary Art Philadelphia (ICA) last fall. The exhibition is curated by Kate Kraczon, Laporte Associate Curator at the ICA.
“A poetic approach to language and symbolism progressively distanced her work from easy categorization,” explained Kate Kraczon in a statement. “The inclusion of personal narrative—through literary, philosophical, and autobiographical references—and set of bold color and theatrical imagery infused her objects with sly humor and a concern with the decorative, generating a feminist legacy increasingly appreciated in retrospect. Morton’s conceptually rigorous work can seem esoteric at times, yet her intention is ultimately one of generosity towards the viewer, and it is in this spirit of generosity, playfulness, and joy that this exhibition hopes to expand.”
You can view Morton’s works by visiting the Tang between 12 pm and 5 pm on Tuesdays through Sundays, and until 9 pm on Thursdays. If you’re interested in learning more about the exhibit, there will also be a curator’s tour on August 20 at 12 pm given by exhibition organizer Ian Berry, Dayton Director at the Tang. The exhibition will remain on display through January 5.