Mark Harris has returned to painting for his new exhibition Morning Star at Country Club gallery, opening this Friday with a reception from 7-9 pm. Harris has invented a sidelong relationship to these paintings (and a series of accompanying drawings) that are more conceptual project than romantic studio practice. Using Dick Fairfield’s 1970 book Modern Utopian: Communes, U.S.A. as source material for his series of large-scale works.
The drawings are exact enlargements of photographs of commune life in Fairfield’s book, while each of Harris’ paintings are recreations of artworks that can be glimpsed in scenes from day to day life at Morning Star, one of the communes discussed in the book.
Harris has had to invent their color schemes and even parts of their compositions when the original paintings weren’t fully visible in his source material. Harris writes “I imagine these works as a form of contemporary history painting… I regard '60s psychedelic imagery, and by extension the art made on these communes, as wish images that indirectly represent ideals that may have been unrealizable at the time."
Go here for show and gallery details.