Morris Louis


Morris Louis Bernstein (November 28, 1912 – September 7, 1962), known professionally as Morris Louis, was an American painter. During the 1950s he became one of the earliest exponents of Color Field painting. While living in Washington, D.C., Louis, along with Kenneth Noland and other Washington painters, formed an art movement that is known today as the Washington Color School.

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Morris Louis received his degree from the Maryland Institute of Fine and Applied Arts in Baltimore in 1933. He began by painting in a cubist style that he later abandoned in favor of post-painterly abstraction. In 1936, Louis moved to New York and befriended Leonard Bocour, who developed a special acrylic-resin Magna paint for him. Active in New York and Washington D.C., Louis is also considered one of the Washington color painters.

Country of birth

United States


Artist, painter

ULAN identifier



Morris Louis, Maurice Bernstein, Morris Louis Bernstein, Morris Louis Bernstein (legally changed name in 1938)

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Information from the Getty Research Institute's Union List of Artist Names ® (ULAN), made available under the ODC Attribution License. Accessed July 7, 2024.