The Museum of Contemporary Art Jacksonville has named Ethan Murrow the 2017 recipient of its annual Stein Emerging Artist Prize. Murray, who teaches at the Museum School at Boston’s Tufts University, creates large-scale drawings with photorealistic details. “The Stein Prize recognizes the work of emerging artists who are changing the way we think about contemporary art,” says MOCA Jacksonville director Caitlín Doherty. “By elevating and reinventing the medium of drawing, Ethan Murrow is the embodiment of what the Stein Prize represents.”
Established in 2015, the Stein Prize is awarded annually to an emerging artist chosen from one of MOCA Jacksonville’s self-curated exhibitions. The prize is named for Brooke and Hap Stein, whose Jacksonville-based Regency Centers Corporation operates over 400 commercial properties across the country.
As the second artist selected for the Stein Prize, Murrow will return to Jacksonville on May 24 and 25 for a spate of programs related to drawing, including a mural project and an afternoon with art students at the University of North Florida, which houses MOCA Jacksonville. The museum will also acquire one of Murrow’s works for its permanent collection and provide the artist with a stipend. Last year’s first recipient of the Stein Prize was New York abstractionist Jackie Saccoccio, whose work appeared at the museum last summer in “Confronting the Canvas: Women of Abstraction.”
For “Plethora,” a 2016 exhibition in MOCA Jacksonville’s Project Atrium space, Murrow used Sharpies and a projected photograph to create a monumental site-specific drawing of a figure leaning over a spread of fruit, fish, and flowers. Inspired by traditional Dutch still-life painting, the drawing is intended as a commentary on greed, consumption, and privilege.
Murrow received his bachelor’s degree from Carleton College and his MFA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and his work has been exhibited in Paris, Brussels, Los Angeles, and New York. He recently received a commission from the Institute for Contemporary Art Boston for a two-storey wall drawing in the museum’s lobby and is currently preparing for a solo exhibition at the Nevada Museum of Art.