Nationally acclaimed for her bold, imaginative, allegorical paintings of animals, Melissa Miller is an iconoclastic artist who has fearlessly worked outside of prevailing artistic styles and movements since the mid-1970s. Her paintings have been included in the Whitney Biennial and the Venice Bienniale and collected by major museums, including the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden and the National Museum of Women in the Arts, in Washington, D.C. Miller draws on a wider variety of literary and art historical sources than most contemporary artists, as well as a deeply felt connection to the natural world, to compose narratives that use animal actors to powerfully express humanity's inchoate fears and longings.
Melissa Miller is the first major publication of this important artist's work. The book presents over one hundred color images of Miller's paintings, from early work done in the late 1970s up to paintings created in the mid-2000s. These color plates allow viewers to follow the intriguing development of Miller's art from action-packed narratives, to more symbol-laden allegories incorporating supernatural and spectral creatures, to pastoral tableaux imbued with a serenity and sense of order that is new to Miller's aesthetic.
Accompanying Miller's paintings are essays by noted critics Susie Kalil and Michael Duncan. Kalil offers an authoritative, art historical overview of Miller's work, including her connections with European and Asian art, as well as perceptive commentary on numerous paintings and extensive quotes from the artist herself. Duncan's essay focuses on Miller's use of animals as agents of metamorphosis and transformation. Lists of Miller'ssolo and group exhibitions, a list of public collections that own her work, and a bibliography round out the book.
A landmark, mid-career assessment of a major American artist, Melissa Miller is the definitive volume on this nonconformist painter.