Morris Katz (born Moshe Katz on March 5, 1932 – November 12, 2010) was a Polish-American painter. He holds two Guinness World Records as the world’s fastest painter and the world’s most prolific artist. He has also been called the “King of Schlock Art” and the “King of Toilet Paper Art” because of a novel means of painting he developed using a palette knife and toilet tissue instead of a paintbrush.
Katz was born in 1932 in Galicia, Poland. At age 13 he studied under Dr. Hans Fokler of the Munich Academy. He moved to the United States in 1949, when he took a job in carpentry while maintaining a sideline with his art.While working on his unpublished Dictionary of Color in 1956, he decided to try painting with his palette knife instead of his brushes. As of February 2007, over his career he had painted more than 280,000 paintings.
Over his long career, he established himself as a painter, comedian and television personality. An obituary described him as “creating ‘instant art’ and entertaining generations of guests in the old Borscht Belt hotels. Katz described his method as “Instant Art,” as he completed entire paintings in as little as 30 seconds.
In a 1987 event to benefit the Boy Scouts of America, Katz completed 103 paintings (selling 55 of them on the spot) in 12 hours. He is listed as a human oddity in Ripley’s Believe It Or Not because of his ability to paint full works of art in less than five minutes.
A 2003 review of a serious painting said “Normally this artist’s works are notable only for their carefree and speedy execution, but this painting is a welcome exception.”