Our Gates- Human Sacrifice in the American
30, 2003 - June 19, 2003
Morris Washington personalizes the memory
of lynchings through his mural-like paintings,
evoking the pain and the tragedy of the African-American
experience. He depicts the pastoral scenes
and tranquil settings where lynching, without
lawful trial and mob-oriented, actually took
Washington focuses on the memory of lynching in America during
the Reconstruction Era to the late 20th Century by painting lynching
sites, and by juxtaposing the landscapes with text of what once
happened there. In order to understand lynching in the US, Washington
thoroughly researched his subject matter, in distant places and
time, from the Aztec to Mayan practices to the burnt offerings
of flesh by the Druid and Celtic clans of the British Isles.
He examined how lynching expressed irrational vengeance, human
sacrifice and indigenous terrorism to keep a stigmatized segment
of society “in” line.
Washington earned his BFA with Distinction at the Massachusetts
College of Art in 1993. He received his MFA from Tufts University/School
of the Museum of Fine Arts in 2000. He is an Artist-In-Residence of Northeastern University's AAMARP program, teaches at the Mass College
of Art and Wheelock College.
His work has been exhibited throughout
Boston and New England, in New York, and Washington DC. He is the
recipient of numerous awards, among them the Blanche E. Colman
Award, Tufts University.