Professor and Chair, Division of Art
Professor Michael Corris (PhD History of Art, University College London; MFA Painting/Media, MICA, Baltimore; BA Art with Honors, Brooklyn College/City University of New York) is an artist and writer on art whose work is most closely identified with the critical practices and attitudes of Conceptual art; specifically, with the work of the collective, Art & Language.
As a participant in the collective Art & Language in New York (1972-1976), Corris exhibited and published internationally, was a founding editor of The Fox, engaged in the organization of artists, and contributed to the debate surrounding the conjunction of avant-garde art and political activism. Such issues and contingent practices — once contentious and divisive of the art world — have coalesced since the mid-1980s to form stable and manageable forms of art and social engagement. These attitudes and practices are familiar to us as “institutional critique”, “interventionist art” and “political art”, among other names.
For Corris, these practices remain fascinating objects of inquiry that continue to inform his work. Corris’ artwork takes a variety of forms: installation, bookworks, Internet sites, exhibition organizing, publication initiatives, critical writing and historical research. His practice is situational and largely the result of collaborative and conversational encounters that draw upon intellectual and social resources outside the boundaries of art.
Corris’ work may be found in public and private collections worldwide, including the Museum of Modern Art (New York), Le Consortium (Dijon), Victoria and Albert Museum (London), Staatsgaleri (Stuttgart), Le Musée des Beaux-Arts (La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland), Progressive Art Collection (Cleveland and Tampa), Collection Ghislain Mollet-Viéville (Paris), and the Getty Research Institute (Los Angeles). Corris will be exhibiting in the forthcoming Dallas Biennial, sponsored by the Dallas Contemporary (April 2012).
Corris’ writings on contemporary art have been widely published in international journals and magazines, such as Art Monthly, Artforum, Art History, art+text, and are included in Alex Alberro & Blake Stimson (eds), Conceptual Art: A Critical Anthology (MIT Press, 1999). Recent publications include Conceptual Art: Theory, Myth and Practice (Cambridge University Press, 2004), Ad Reinhardt (Reaktion Books, London, 2008), Non-Relational Aesthetics (London, 2008) (with Charlie Gere), and Art, Word & Image: 2,000 Years of Textual/Visual Interaction (Reaktion Books, London, 2010) (with John Dixon Hunt and David Lomas). Corris has recently completed a survey of the New York School of Painting and Sculpture (1940-1970) to be included in Exploring Art and Visual Culture: The Twentieth Century (eds. Steve Edwards and Paul Wood, forthcoming 2012, Open University and Yale University Press) and is preparing a monograph on contemporary art’s response to the changing suite of skills demanded of the artist in an information-based culture.
Along with Sharon Kivland, Jaspar Joseph-Lester, and Noah Simblist, Corris is an editor of Transmission Annual, an interdisciplinary thematic anthology of art and culture co-published by SMU and Sheffield-Hallam University, UK. The third issue of Transmission Annual — devoted to the theme of catastrophe — will be released in July 2012.
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