I am fascinated and inspired by great works of historic art and often make references to favourite masterpieces in my paintings. I enjoy placing historic images in a new context thus bringing past and present together in a new interpretation and paying homage to art works I admire.
After fifteen years working as a designer of theatrical productions I returned to my first love, painting. For many years still life painting was the foundation of my work. About ten years ago I began introducing references to historic art works on books placed in a still life. Then I expanded these references to include unwrapped images of historic paintings and objects, and trompe l’oeil sketches of famous masterpieces. Sometimes I take a portrait, enlarge it and change the context. Further developments include fractured portraits, landscapes and still lives. To create these first I cut up photos of the image to make a photo collage which becomes the sketch for the painting. As the painting develops more changes are made to the original image. The multiple viewpoints and shifting planes add an
element of movement to the original, static image. This process is similar to the way classical and jazz musicians make variations on an old melody to create a new composition.
Changing the context of historic images invites the viewer to see them in a new way. In my designs for theatre I created contemporary visual interpretations for old stories and legends. Now as I unite past and present in my paintings I hope to encourage the viewer to contemplate the rich artistic heritage which is a vital part of our shared human experience.
Biography & CV
b. 1943, Michigan, USA.
Currently living in Oakville, Ontario
1965 B.A. in art, University of Redlands, Redlands, CA.
1969 M.F.A. in painting, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa. Moves to Nova Scotia, Canada.
1969 Art Consultant, Kings County School Board, Nova Scotia. Begins experiments in puppet theatre.
1972 Co-founder of Mermaid Theatre, Windsor, Nova Scotia. Performer and Resident Designer for Mermaid Theatre until 1987. Designs puppet and mask productions which tour Canada England, Wales, Australia, Japan, Mexico and the United States.
1981 Moves to Toronto. Resumes painting part-time while still designing for Mermaid Theatre.
1987 Resigns from Mermaid and begins painting and exhibiting full time. Since 1987 Tom Miller has exhibited in solo and group exhibitions in Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver and Victoria, as well as galleries in Florida, California, Washington State and Italy. His work is part of corporate and private collections in Canada, the United States, Taiwan and Italy.
1988 Moves to Vancouver and participates in West Coast art scene.
2005 Moves to Oakville, Ontario and continues to develop new series of paintings which feature variations on paintings, sculptures and art objects created by historic artists from many cultures.
SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS
Chosen from over 75 group exhibitions
2016 Joseph D Carrier Gallery, Columbus Centre, Exhibition of studies for paintings. Toronto
2015 Trias Gallery, Oakville, ON, Still Life Exhibition in February.
2011 The Orchard Gallery, King City, ON, in October
2010 Canadian Artists in Spoleto, Italy. Organized by the Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery, Toronto, ON
2009 Bruno Capolongo Invitational at the Hamilton Conservatory For The Arts, Hamilton, ON
2008 Cannington House Gallery, Oakville, ON, in December
2006 Ingram Gallery, Toronto, ON, in October
2005 Ballet Society Exhibition, Hummingbird Centre, Toronto, ON
2004 "West Coast Landscapes", Vancouver Club, Vancouver, BC; "Black And White", EOS Gallery, Redlands, CA, in December; Winchester Galleries, Victoria, B.C., in December - January
2002 "Still Life, Realism to Abstract", Elissa Cristall Gallery, Vancouver "Black And White", EOS Gallery, Redlands, CA
2001 "The Still Life Show", Russell Gallery, Peterborough, ON
2000 "The Mystery Of the Subject", two-person show with Louis de Niverville, Russell Gallery, Peterborough, ON
"Spring Flowers", Ingram Gallery, Toronto, ON
"Five By Five", Elissa Cristall Gallery, Vancouver, BC
1999 "Artist Botanica", Van Dusen Botanical Garden, Vancouver, BC
1998 "Four Canadians", State Street Gallery, Sarasota, Florida, in March
1997 "The Canadian Collection at APEC 97", Vancouver, BC
1995 Presentation House, North Vancouver, BC
1994 Harmony Festival, West Vancouver, BC
1989 Ballet Society Exhibit, O'Keefe Centre, Toronto, ON
1988 Acadia University Art Gallery, Wolfville, Nova Scotia
1987 "Fantasy and Dreams", O'Keefe Centre, Toronto, ON "Escapes", O'Keefe Centre, Toronto, ON
Juried Drawing Exhibition, The Latcham Gallery, Stouffville, ON
*** Arts Umbrella Exhibitions and auctions 1999-2005, Vancouver, BC
*** Arts For Life Exhibitions and auctions 1997-2005, Vancouver, BC