Exploring themes of domestic uncanny across various lens-based mediums, the Tasmanian-born artist currently residing in Melbourne and studying a BFA at RMIT, creates works that assume a form of grime, but that are softened by bubblegum pinks or baby blue backdrops. Morse explains.
“I like that that they [pastel hues] sit well with the skin tones that I use and that their “inoffensive” character contrasts nicely with my grotesque subject matter. There are also the obvious gender associations, but I’m trying to forget about, or at least downplay, those.” He elaborates, describing this gritty approach of disembodied objects floating in mid-air, and unambiguous, mundane, images altered into gif style movements, as ‘slick’. “I like the sleazy connotations that word carries; how whatever it describes seems somehow underhand or sophistic.”
These seamlessly simple images no doubt require a great deal of image capture and editing, all the images that don’t make the final cut or grouping however are not simply discarded. “Everything I make gets posted to my blog, regardless of its quality. The things I like the most get shown IRL. I do group works together that are aesthetically and conceptually similar, but lately I’ve been trying to avoid working in explicit series. I want to work towards making pieces that stand on their own”, Morse explains.
His recent works, appear to be filled with quite subtle and everyday imagery, a concept which he describes as “recontextualising the everyday”. “I aim to make the familiar unfamiliar; to make images that inhabit the uncanny limbo between seduction and repulsion. Lately I’ve been making “partial objects,” fleshy lumps glistening with sweat, ostensibly severed from a body and floating against the pastel backgrounds mentioned earlier. They epitomise the ideal: at once human and inhuman, relatable but repulsive.”
It seems Morse’s images are specifically engineered to stimulate desire, something which he says appeals to him a lot. And if you desire to see his work in the flesh, Morse will be on exhibition with Anna Crews at Fort Delta in Melbourne on March 19.
Words / Jamie-Maree Shipton