ArtGrams: Appreciating Morris Louis

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Via Instagrammer @_samjang_ #MorrisLouis #DC

This month’s ArtGrams features Morris Louis’s large-scale painting Seal (1959). Louis, founding member of the Washington Color School, spent years working in Washington, DC. He drew inspiration from artists in The Phillips Collection including Pierre Bonnard, Henri Matisse, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Arthur Dove, Mark Rothko, and Augustus Vincent Tack. Related to his Veil series, Seal was one of the first paintings by Louis to be acquired by a museum. Here are some of our favorite interactions with the work snapped by Instagrammers.

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Instagrammer @jonathanaustinart: “Checking out the masterpieces at The Phillips Collection. Best way to start my weekend. Morris Louis’s paintings.”

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We see some Louis reflections in this scarf! Shot by @rareformproperties.

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Thanks, @belleauroradesigns! “Love the @phillipscollection”

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Black top / black jeans / black paint. Photo by @dannythimm

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Cropping just the corner and putting a tinted filter over Louis’s vibrant colors casts “Seal” in a new light. Photo by @willballantynereid

 

A Gallery of Color

The Phillips is home to radiant works by the Washington Color School. Don’t miss the gallery featuring brilliant paintings by Morris Louis, Kenneth Noland, Gene Davis, and Thomas Downing, artist who frequented the museum and were inspired by the American Modernist and French Impressionist works in the galleries. Leo Villareal’s pulsating Scramble offers a contemporary twist to the Color Field canvases.

Washington Color School gallery

Left to right: Grid 31 (1970) by Thomas Downing, April (1960) by Kenneth Noland, Seal (1959) by Morris Louis, Cycle (1960) by Kenneth Noland, Number 182 (1961) by Morris Louis, and Scramble (2011) by Leo Villareal

Freshening the Made in the USA Galleries

Made in the USA curator Susan Behrends Frank discusses some of the recent additions to the exhibition galleries,  from Duncan Phillips’s first personal acquisition (Ernest Lawson’s High Bridge—Early Moon) to one of his final purchases before his death (Loren MacIver’s Printemps).