Michael Morris:
A More Realistic Way Of Seeing The World

September, 1998

Mixed media on canvas. using oil paint and pre-fabricated rubdowns, and printouts to achieve the final result. Michael Morris (U.S.A.) is a graphic designer and artist whose paintings are published in limited editions. He received his Bachelor's of science degree in art education from Kansas State College at Pittsburg, and later earned his Bachelor's and Master's degree in fine arts from Yale University New Haven, Connecticut. You can contact this artist by visiting http://www.artistmichaelmorris.com/
Excerpt from Massurrealism: A Dossier (Novus Haus, 2004) :

"...Massurrealism is the realization of a quest that explores the fertile ground that encompasses both reality and imagination -- the conscious and the subconscious. In Massurrealism the artists combine images from the outer world (the Mass) and inner world (the Surreal). Massurrealism thus brings disparate sides of our life into direct association, juxtaposing personal symbols with the imagery of mass culture, often combining the conflicts themselves -- the hard, pounding throb of a locomotive (mass transportation) charging forward and the soft, yielding form of a woman,swimming above and away; the trendy sophistication of a cocktail with the simple innocence of inquisitive goldfish. What is real, we might ask. What is imagined? These new images offer a glimpse into a universal hologram; a view that points at something beyond just images; a vision that may explain nothing -- yet might just explain everything. As such, Massurrealism pursues what is perhaps the ultimate realism.

Massurrealism Defined
First is the idea of mass, from the mass media of television, advertising and the Internet to the products of mass production -- Alarm clocks,, automobiles, trains, jet aircraft, etc. from mass culture --Soda cans,cocktails, beach balls, swimming pools, etc -- to the inexplicable mass of particle physics, energy, and the oneness of the Universe. Like Rembrandt, the massurrealist immerses the viewer in the details of daily life. Like Van Gogh, expresses the energy and power of light, the shimmering reality of objects themselves and like Warhol shows the reality of the generic objects themselves. The surreal draws also from many sources -- from dreams and insights, hopes and fears, longings, half-explained desires and other subconscious mysteries.. Yet it is surreal as well, because what stays behind after the fact is our individual remembrance, our own interpretation of that reality. This is where it becomes interesting, in the different personalities and techniques of each artist. Were Andrew Wyeth, Edward Hopper and Thomas Eakins mere realists? Or can we find something more than reality in the barrenness of a woman alone in a field, or the smoldering sexuality of a man and his secretary in a small office, or the vibrant highlights and deep shadows of rowers on the Schuylkill -- something remembered or dreamed, something surreal? The surreal is the visual narration of our subconscious. It is the creative force, the intuitive, the autonomic. It is our imagination. What is real is what is happening now. It is that which is agreed upon only now. Today, both of these thrusts -- the outside and the inside -- have begun to intrude even more violently into our minds. Music on the streets becomes louder, the broken beer bottles and wrappers from Burger King more invasive. Yet against these shouts and chaos there is also quiet and order -- Mozart and Bix Biederbecke are only the flick of a switch away. A peaceful sunset,the solemn waters of a lake ripple only steps away. Each of us is attracted and yet frightened by this beginnings of a global culture, of new knowledge about the universes, large and small, the questions of our place within these. There is a new unavoidable unfolding of spirituality on the inside. A collective awareness of global awakening.And these are all ideas and realities that Massurrealism confronts,, addresses and embraces. A raising of the unconsciousness to the surface.

The Art History That Leads To Massurrealism
Perhaps we can better understand what Massurrealism is by exploring what it came after, and how it fits into the truly mind-boggling stream of ideas and paintings that form the legacy of each of us today. It's a diverse and far reaching chronicle, yet one that we too often take for granted. This testimony includes such diverse geniuses as Van Gogh, and Michaelangelo, Ingres and Warhol, Courbet and Dali. Because in many ways, we are their heirs. We follow in the paths they, and many thousands of others, have opened for us..."