Mara Facile Miller
About the Artist and Process:
I am a working artist and art teacher from Maplewood, Minnesota. In 2009, I graduated from the Literary Arts Program at the Perpich Center for Arts High School. I then attended the University of Minnesota, Morris and graduated in 2014 from the Honors Program with majors in Studio Art, English, and Education, with a minor in Creative Writing. I now work as an elementary art teacher and an online Middle and High School Art Teacher with the Lakeville Area School System, in addition to continuing to make and create.
Batik is an imperfect process, but one that is perfect for me. It combines (nearly) everything I love most about art creation processes. It combines the flexibility of fibers and exquisite visual texture, yet requires careful planning for layer after layer of color work, while allowing (and usually forcing) a certain amount of adaptability to account for and embrace those “happy little accidents” which are inevitable and give the work its satisfactory feeling of completion. And when the piece is done being waxed I get to “reveal” the project by melting the wax and uncovering the true color created by the combination of wax and dye.
About the Work:
Seasons, weather, food, color, fashion, and elemental forces all influence the work of my creations. I try to create in sets of matched pairs, which eventually become quartets, around a single theme or idea.
Sharing the abundance and impact of this beautiful planet we inhabit, and how the changing seasons and elements of the world not only help us to enjoy daily life but to grow with it. Each day we have the chance to put on a different mask, a different costume, and live for the world we experience with our various senses. Our eyes play a role, but our understanding of what makes something special comes from our memories, our stories, our sense of texture, taste, sound and smell. Trying to visually represent the essence of an idea, of my own specific sense of history, story, memory, and flavor while also creating works that are both relatable and universal, as well as visually striking is my challenge.
For me, the seasons of the world influence my imagery the most, from the choice of colors to the subject itself, I try to create a work that is not only lovely and rich in detail, but shares a grander story within a season. Spring, winter, fall and summer each have such a unique personality. They are something we all experience in our own ways. I hope that you enjoy my representations of each and how I see the influence in each image, texture and story.
In the “creatures” imagery, my goal was to embody the various elements that surround us, throughout the seasons. These creatures came into existence in a much more organic and free-flowing process than the carefully crafted seasonal imagery, but also convey a sense of wonder and curiosity.
As I am just starting to walk this path of life and art as they mesh and blend, I am excited to see how my ideas relating to seasons, color, and imagination will evolve.
Art of Education University
Masters in Art Education, in progress
University of Minnesota Morris
Bachelor of Art, Visual Arts and English with an Emphasis in Creative Writing