Recent Paintings by Greg Miller
May 14 - June 8, 2016
ST. HELENA, CA - Caldwell Snyder is pleased to announce the new exhibition, Eyefull, for Greg Miller: May 14th through June 8, 2016.
At its core Pop Art was about the qualities of its time, which was also Miller’s childhood. A time of post-war optimism for a clean, well-lit future in which consumerism promised happiness and the west coast was winning the future. Thus his work absolutely exists in dialog with artists like Ed Ruscha and Mel Ramos. Except Miller’s side of the conversation is happening in another dialect, the lingua franca of a new generation whose experience of culture is messy, fraught, and overloaded with simultaneous information. Hence the Boschian density of layered and enmeshed detail. But Miller’s is a plague of pleasures, free of irony if not obsession. This work is joyful, exuberant, and unapologetically about California.
Buena Vista is a part of San Francisco where Miller’s parents lived in the 1940s. He came of age in the Bay Area of the 1960s and ‘70s, under the influence of beatniks and poets like Wallace Berman, Wally Hedrick, and George Herms. His visual style was born from that fractured aesthetic and the charisma of decay. In LA, Miller felt the allure of both Pop and Light & Space, which blended with his early influences, becoming his mature style of cumulative rendering and high-gloss surfaces. And about those surfaces -- as a formal matter, the sealing fossilizes the paintings, which are built of dozens of layers and benefit from the physical, almost sculptural cohesion. The choice to use surfboard resin instead of varnish to seal them imparts essential insight into Miller’s art and to life as well. This technique creates the dazzling effects of depth, contrast, and glittering movement familiar in art history, while containing wit and meaning as inherent qualities of the material. Because, always, California. -- Shana Nys Dambrot, Los Angeles, 2014