Martha Miller began drawing self-portraits at the age of fifteen. Though portraiture and work from the figure now comprise a significant body of her work, the self-portrait has long been her central method of expression. Miller has a strong reputation for her work in pencil, pastel, charcoal, and mixed media. For more than thirty years her work has appeared in over two-dozen invitational and juried exhibitions. She currently works in her home studio in Woolwich and recently retired from teaching at MECA through their Continuing Studies department.
“In making a portrait, I attempt to reveal something of the psychological and emotional depth of the individual, but also something more archetypal — what it means to be human — to have a past, passions, and a spirit.
Using bits of the surrounding room to set a stage, the resulting work is influenced by many layers of stimuli including such factors as mood, conversation, images on the studio wall and music, as well as images from memories and dreams. I use all these scattered and changing sources much like a novelist to pull together a story on the page.
My self-portraits are born of this same process, and are part of an on-going spiritual and emotional diary.”