press comments

Wilbury Three  2017 120 x 150cm  Acrylic on canvas

...Morris conceives of painting as an art of layering. Opacities and translucencies are overlaid and juxtaposed to create an image in which space moves through colour and colour through space. The result is a luminous clarity, even a kind of innocence, but one whose affirmation is simultaneously deconstructed, with formal relationships teased apart to reveal subtle contradictions and complexities...

Essay by Sam Cornish reprinted in Wall Street International

Wilbury Three  2017
120 x 150cm  Acrylic on canvas
Private Collection

...This painting, although frontal in its composition, has the ability to draw the viewer back into the space.  The choppy brush strokes within the bone-black rectangles draw the eye, as the gestures are relaxed but incisive... Different, unexpected happenings within each rectangle trigger an originality and uniqueness...

Laurence Noga reviewing Kaleidoscope at FOLD Gallery, London, August 2016 on

Second Stradella  2016 198 x 214cm  Acrylic on canvas
Second Stradella  2016
198 x 214cm  Acrylic on canvas
Second Stradella  2016 198 x 214cm  Acrylic on canvas

… In Mali Morris's abstract paintings, although there is clear enjoyment of the materiality of the paint, it's de-materialisation into colour and light is more important. And if the physical stuff of paint is transmuted into light, the artist's toil is transformed into play. The paintings are joyous, fun even, but in the same way that in dance, much effort is expended in making it look easy…

Andy Parkinson reviewing Nine Painters, Syson Gallery, Nottingham, May 2017, curated by Richard Davey

Together  2011  
70 x 80cm  Acrylic on canvas

Hear, Hear - Jerwood Visual Arts

Hear, Hear...a bursary of £10,000 and the opportunity to be mentored by artists and selectors, Marcus Harvey, Mali Morris and Fabian Peake.
Eleanor Nairne, Writer in Residence at Jerwood Foundation, 2013

Crossings (Small)  2014 25.5 x 31cm  Acrylic on canvas
Crossings (Small)  2014
25.5 x 31cm  Acrylic on canvas
Blue Flame  2004  24 x 30cm  Acrylic on canvas

… I don't know that I have ever seen colour so luminous, or space, self-evidently the result of painterly gesture or manipulation, so mysterious…

Andy Parkinson reviewing 'Without An Edge There Is No Middle', Pluspsace, Coventry, 2013

Blue Flame  2004  
24 x 30cm  Acrylic on canvas
... And there is movement between the seven disks…. I become aware of my own process of attention-giving and how this very act brings one event momentarily to the fore while another recedes… After all, it is paint we are looking at here, and painting that is resolutely and magnificently abstract…

Andy Parkinson reviewing Mali Morris: Back To Front at Eagle Gallery, London, 2012
Seven/Mesh  2012  45 x 60cm  Acrylic on canvas
Seven/Mesh  2012
45 x 60cm  Acrylic on canvas
Private Collection
Dark Mesh  2012  35 x 44cm  Acrylic on canvas
…  Mali Morris’ paintings, energised by their interplay of the planned and the spontaneous, both hide and reveal. First, she covers the canvas with a variety of bright colours; second, she covers those with darker strokes; third, she niftily sponges off small shapes – often dots, recently squares, too - from the top surface. Typically, she’ll go through that cycle several times before she’s satisfied with the push and pull between accumulating layers, and the exactness of the colour-chord discovered. Though far from didactic, I wonder if they might suggest that, while we all have hidden depths, we need to find a social way to display and harmonise them.

Paul Carey-Kent, review of Back to Front at Eagle Gallery, 2012, in the Saatchi Online Magazine
Dark Mesh  2012
35 x 44cm  Acrylic on canvas
Private Collection
... there is a silent intensity, all the more mysterious as we realise that what we are experiencing is light more than colour and space as much as forms... she has achieved this economy slowly, through years of intelligent, observant work.

Norbert Lynton, Contemporary Visual Arts, Issue 15
Breath  1997  171 x 197cm  Acrylic on canvas
Breath  1997
171 x 197cm  Acrylic on canvas
Third Party  1979  208 x 139cm  Acrylic on canvas
…  I admired the shimmering transparency that Morris achieves in ‘Third Party’  (1979), now in a retrospective of her work since the 1970’s at Poussin Gallery.

Matthew Collings, Diary, Modern Painters, February 2006
Third Party  1979  
208 x 139cm  Acrylic on canvas
… Mali Morris is an artist to cherish, whose relaxed and candid paintings have an atmosphere in which nuance and bluntness co-exist.

Tim Hilton, The Guardian
Black Diamond Encircled  1989  99 x 142cm  Acrylic on canvas
Black Diamond Encircled  1989
99 x 142cm  Acrylic on canvas
Private Collection
Plural on Red  2002  40 x 51cm  Acrylic on canvas
... and (yes, OK, my favourite) Mali Morris’ brilliant abstract, Plural on Red.

Charles Darwent, reviewing John Moores,
Independent on Sunday 2002

Plural on Red  2002
40 x 51cm  Acrylic on canvas
Private Collection
... there's a fantastic, edible abstract, Marron Glacé, by Mali Morris.

Charles Darwent reviewing RA Summer Exhibition,
Independent on Sunday, June 2008
Marron Glacé  2008  30 x 40 cm  Acrylic on canvas
Marron Glacé  2008
30 x 40 cm  Acrylic on canvas
Private Collection

All images
© Mali Morris 2023