Bruce Morrow Bio
Learn about the unique life and lifestyle of Bruce Morrow, a Whidbey Island, Washington artist.
Rob Shouten Gallery
765 Wonn Road #C-103
Greenbank, WA, 98253
BRUCE MORROW BIO
I was born in 1948 in Glendale California. Which was the suburbs of Los Angeles.
My first experiences with art go back to second grade where myself and another kid were in a contest to see who could do the best 1954 ford truck.
In third grade one of my pieces got selected to go to the LA County fair. When I walked in the door of that big hall, I was hooked. From then on I was the guy in the back of the class who was drawing instead of working on my arithmetic.
My college education took place at California Institute of the Arts which at the time was known as Chounard Art School. This was during the sixties and the School was in transition from a "traditional" art school toward something more modern and Avant Garde. I came out of it with a pretty traditional education, I did a lot of figure drawing, and a lot of composition classes.
When I got out of school The first thing I did was move out of Southern California to New Mexico where I spent a couple of years. It was really nice for an LA kid to get out of the city to the real rural areas of New Mexico and to appreciate the Landscapes. I was really into landscapes then and I think I always have been.
After a couple of years out there the poverty thing forced me back to California. I went up to the Bay Area to stay with friends and ended up staying in Berkeley. I was hanging around the Voulkos scene and that's where I met Buffy. I was doing a lot of silk screened images that were still based on landscapes.
We got married in 1979, had Briony in '82 and moved to Whidbey Island in '86. During those years there wasn't much art getting done. But once on Whidbey we got involved in the local art scene and started producing once again. Living in the Northwest somehow made me nostalgic for the Southwest and I did something new; I started painting figurative images in oils. -I think I like oils because of the quality of the colors-. So this figure- this Dude emerged and he seemed to represent to me the ennui of the displaced American male, the maverick, the cowboy without a range. There was a real sense of nostalgia to these paintings of guys and horses, trucks and dogs. Eventually he got lonely- or I got romantic - and the dancer series appeared, first with a mono print called Dancers in the moonlight.
The family had acquired a large format Takasch etching press which wasn't being used much, so I took some classes in Seattle and Guemes Island and got hooked on printing. I love the process of making a plate and then the process of printing multiples. I work in wood block, etching, aquatint and "series mono prints" mostly. I tend to cross refer images from painting to print and back again because there's so much to explore when you get a good image, or idea.
My work is very narrative anyhow; there's always the beginning of a story there. So each time I do an image, there's the possibility that the ending will change.
Visit Flicker Feather Press, flickerfeatherpress.com, a fully equipped art press, adjacent to our home and studies.
It features a 60 x 30 Takash etching press, accompanied by a rosin aquatint box, commercial hot plate, downdraft table and expansive glass topped work stations.
The Flicker Feather press is suitable for intaglio, block printing and mono printing.
In the spring and fall we give hands on workshops on various printing techniques.
The space can be rented by the day and can accommodate up to five people.