Morgan Cristine Flores
b. 1981/Los Angeles
Lives/Works in Vermont
My art practice is a multidisciplinary approach to exploring the relationship between myself and my surroundings. As a mixed-race Mexican-American woman, documentary filmmaker, and abstract expressionist painter, how do I process my existence on both the scale of the geographical landscape, historical space, and also the landscape of the everyday? With my art practice, I seek to identify and honor the many pieces of myself, all the while using the platform of art-making as an avenue to find incorporation, discovery, wholeness and belonging.
My methods involve observation of the landscapes and everyday life around me, research into the intersections of history and ecology of the land on which I'm currently residing, and collecting of objects and imagery based on my observations and research. I bring these objects and images into the studio, sorting, organizing and categorizing. Then, in a combination of planned or spontaneous gestures and movements, I construct paintings and sculptures that reflect my synthesis of the collaged elements of the conceptual and the visual.
In my recent body of work, which I created from 2020-22 when I returned to California for my MFA in Art Studio, writing as a medium and element also entered into my art practice. Peanut, a quasi-autobiographical character, emerged as the point-of-view through which this work was being made and understood—at least by and to myself. Peanut’s “Artist Statement” is not only her introduction to the world, but it also serves as a description of this body of work, at the same time that it stands as its own literary piece.
As I progress into a new body of work since moving to Vermont at the end of 2022, along with exploring this newer-to-me region and its histories, I am also meditating on the possibility of bringing Peanut with me, or if another quasi-autobiographical character will develop during this time to reflect my new discoveries, surroundings, and newer versions of myself.
Photo by Juan Herrera