want to meet with the artist? You can request for a meeting to discuss a commision for view the available original paintings

John Miller at at FlatFile Contemporary
Art in America, Jan, 2005 by Victor M. Cassidy

John Miller exhibited 15 digital inkjet prints--eight 72-by-64-inch diptychs, three 48-by-64-inch triptychs and three 24-by-64-inch horizontal works--at Chicago's FlatFile Contemporary. A painter for many years, Miller received an old Macintosh computer as a gift in 1999, learned to use Photoshop and started his art career all over again. In this exuberant new work, he revels in the spontaneity and freedom that digital technology allows, without abandoning the disciplined habits of a lifetime.

Miller makes digital montages from photographed fragments of the urban landscape--banks of glass blocks, the back end of a truck, sewer covers, a tree trunk, apartment balconies, electric wires and more. He explores his gentrifying Chicago neighborhood with a digital camera, loads the day's harvest into his computer and then "paints with photographs," as he puts it. He may stretch some images, layer others, reverse dark and light, manipulate colors or change the orientation of a fragment from horizontal to vertical. Miller finds the computer exhilarating. "It allows such quick changes," he states. "I can enrich the colors, pump them up or tone them down with such immediacy. With paint, I must stop all the time to let it dry."

The prints are rhythmic color fields with much push-pull. Miller photographs buildings from high angles to get repeating diagonals and pyramidlike forms, then manipulates this imagery so that it draws the eye inward or seems to project from the surface of the picture. He repeats and contrasts colors to unify the work and add visual interest. Fluorescent colors serve as accents.

Miller uses an inkjet printer to print out his compositions. If he wants a larger work, he creates a diptych or triptych by placing printouts next to each other like panels. In these, he may butt together vertical bands with contrasting imagery or colors. In the past, he used this compositional strategy in some of his paintings. Strong vertical orientation makes Miller's prints rigorously formal. He organized an earlier body of digital work as grids and seems to be moving slowly toward greater abstraction.

"I see things with a painter's eyes--in terms of how useful they are to me," says Miller. "A painting is a formal statement about space, color and form. I'm doing the same thing I always did, but in a different way."

COPYRIGHT 2005 Brant Publications, Inc.
COPYRIGHT 2005 Gale Group

Top of Page

Yong Chen  Web 

Connect with Us on FaceBook, Youtube, Twitter and mySpace YouTube MySpace FaceBook Twitter