Garvey|Simon – David Morrison: New Drawings at DFN Projects

by | Oct 12, 2021

Garvey|Simon is pleased to present David Morrison: New Drawings, through October 20th, 2021 at DFN Projects. David Morrison’s hyperrealist color pencil drawings of Irises and Bonsai plants are celebrations of nature’s intricacies. Equal parts scientific and poetic, Morrison’s floral still lifes take on a preternatural quality, blurring the boundary between realism and fantasy.

Ever-interested in delicate and often toiling labor, David Morrison’s newest body of work stems from his practice as a master gardener. David’s methodical cultivation of irises and bonsai plants is matched by his handling of colored pencils. He knows and understands his subjects from the inside out; from conception to flowering fruition. As a result, no detail or nuance goes unnoticed or unaccounted for. The enigmatic, near-mystical quality of Morrison’s subjects emerges from the articulation of these details. Brought into vivid clarity by Morrison’s hand, petals and fronds are transformed into their own miniature terrains, and in turn, a world unto themselves. Packed with detail and texture, the blooms possess an ethereal power. 

Though serene and regal, there is a sense of mischief present in Morrison’s drawings. Contradictions and visual puns are woven into his compositions, conspiring with hyperrealism to turn the “still life” genre onto its head. The carefully modulated shadowing around Morrison’s subjects endow them with a sense of depth, using a trompe l’oeil effect to add weight and tangibility to these frozen facsimiles. Vibrant almost glowing irises are severed from their life-giving root systems; the bonsai plants are replicas of replicas of trees. Morrison’s drawings are so very real that they appear unreal, a fact of which Morrison is delightfully self-aware. 

Morrison possesses a rare gift for assessing the visual surface and texture of reality. He shares his gift with us, the viewers of his drawings, and in our experience with his art we witness the intensity of his creative process. Controlling layers of translucent marks made by prismacolor pencils – hour after hour after hour – Morrison produces a dense network of colors on a sheet of paper that slowly, magically, becomes a portion of the world transformed into a work of art. His drawings trigger our perceptions refreshed by uncanny clarity.


For more information on the gallery and artist please visit – www.garveysimon.com. The exhibition is also available on Artsy.net.

Iris Series No. 5, 2021, colored pencil on paper, 29 x 15 in