Painter, poet, surfer, magician â€” Geoff Morten died two years ago. An artist of uncommon daring, he left all of us who knew him both thrilled that he’d entered our lives, and angry that he left so soon. A prodigious intaglio artist, painter and innovator of mixed media, Morten explored the mysteries of his own journey through a body of work rich with metaphor, psychological paradox and astute observation.
His etchings belong in the rarified company of Morandi, Rembrandt and Goya. Of the boldly produced suites of monotypes, drawings and gesturally-compex oil paintings he made during his short life, two dozen works on paper will be on view for the next month at UCSCâ€™s Porter Faculty Gallery, starting February 2 through March 5, 2011.
Trained in the British figurative tradition, Morten pushed through fashionable genres and created magic realist studies displaying the full range of oil and intaglioâ€™s ancient allure. Seven years ago Morten and his ceramicist wife Jenny moved to California to continue careers begun in their native England. He lectured frequently at UCSC and Cabrillo, exhibited widely in California, and amazed his audiences with theatrical turns in the Monterey Bay area.
Geoff was ablaze with a self-generating quest. Thanks to his indelible artwork, his flame still burns.
No one interested in visual art as a graphic meditation on personal quest will want to miss this show of important works on paper by the late Geoff Morten.
Public Reception â€“ Wednesday February 2, 5-6:45pm â€“ Porter Faculty Gallery, Porter College, UCSC: 831/459-3606