Sunday, May 11, 2008

Essay by Jack Livingston, 2008

Bird Full of Mud
On the work of Jackie Milad

is a bird full of mud,
I say aloud.
And death looks on with a casual eye
and scratches his anus.” - Anne Sexton

An avid and lucid daydreamer Jackie Milad’s elegant line drawings document her ruminations. Thematically her work continually circles the twin afflictions of life—sex and death. First traced out in the artist's restrained poetic quasi-Egyptian glyph style, her imagery often later blooms into real life psychological investigations and actions. And while her concerns are decidedly adult they feel intentionally filtered through the sensibilities of a precocious pansexual juvenile. The results are depictions of the awkward moment of the REAL. This makes her work simultaneously charming and unsettling.

These are not images of libertines wallowing in hipster transgression. Milad casts her theater from the masses, exotic everyday commoners who come of age playing games like spin the bottle at dim lit parties, then fumble around paired in dark closets where they emerge transformed flush with dreamy innocent desire. Her work takes us back to our generic archaic selves—each awkwardly learning to fly, bodies of clay winging beneath libidinous rushes of warm air. Plain skin, plain tongue, plain fingers probing plain orifices, all collapsing...wriggling and impish, they pass out in faux catatonic states (on request of the artist—you can participate too) overwhelmed by the contradictions of being (becoming?) ancient hairless possum kin ripe with giggles and flatulence—their genitals cooled out, many behind tight clean stylish undergarments. Something here is reminiscent of the angular gender bending beauty and tone of mid-period magpie culture-artist musician David Bowie.

In one of many subtle role reversals employed by Milad, peacocking males—some reminiscent of the protagonists that populate William Burrough's satiric proto-punk homoerotic novel Wild Boys—are portrayed mouths agape caught in mid-whistle. A thread of masculine exhibitionism and desire runs throughout. The artist, recast as admiring anthropologist with a winking gaze, codifies and indexes this ancient form of communication. She is beguiled both by the ubiquitous nature of the form and its numerous and variant practitioners. Milad maintains a collection of field recordings she captured in Mexico when researching the topic and plans to expand the practice in the future. Also, her Honduran born brothers were all active whistlers. Their expressive tonal displays remain a fond memory from her childhood.

Ultimately all art is autobiographical, and Milad's oeuvre is no exception. But Milad avoids any hint of narcissistic cliché. In her work the self and the other converge in a hot house-of-mirrors—blending into a stew of humanity free-falling perfectly disheveled, goofy and calmly torrid amid empty white space cleaved with muted pendulous washes and echoing across mythic borders all day and through the night—a trickster in a house of love.

Jack Livingston
May 2, 2008

Friday, May 9, 2008

Just Between Us Catalogues Available at Blurb dot Com

An Exhibition prese...
By Cara Ober & Dana ...

Paper Airplane

Sidney Pink

Thanks to everyone who applied! We had an overwhelming response for our first ever juried show! We had over ninety applicants and, in the end, our jurors Amy Raehse and Jackie Milad narrowed it down to just fourteen artists. Congratulations!

Artists: Linda Bills, Sasha Blanton, Jennifer Brickey, Stephanie Beck, Ian Maclean Davis, Sophia Flood, Karl Hluska, Magnolia Laurie, Karena Ness, Nikki Painter, Frank Phillips, Sydney Pink, Rachel Sitkin, Bonner Sale.

Paper Airplane will be up from June 28 - August 30, 2008.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Jackie Milad: Just Between Us opens Thursday, May 15


Just Between Us is a solo exhibit of drawings by local artist and curator Jackie Milad.
Exhibition: May 15 - June 21, 2008
Opening Reception: Thursday, May 15 from 7-9 p.m.
The exhibit will include catalogues for sale and a catalogue essay by Jack Livingston.

“Ms. Milad's exuberant andro-fem figures mix archetypes, channeling the likes of Nefertiti, Carolee Schneemann and Courtney Love into one timeless sweetly odd and transgressive "her". They possess a fairy-tale power similar to the late works of the poet Ann Sexton.”-Excerpt from review in Peek Review, by Jack Livingston.


Jackie Milad is an artist who works with drawing, performance art and installation, and often creates projects that brings these disciplines together. Her projects explore the awkward moments shared between people.

She has exhibited internationally and nationally in such places such as The Contemporary Museum in Baltimore, Gallery 32 as part of the London Biennale, Delaware Center of Contemporary Art in Wilmington, Museum of Fine Arts in Mazatlan, Mexico and Galeria del Jovenes in Culiacan, Mexico.

In 2005 she earned her MFA from Towson University, and in 2000 she received her BFA from Tufts University and the School of Museum of Fine Arts. In 1998, Ms. Milad studied painting at the Studio Arts Center International in Florence Italy. She is currently Program Coordinator for the Union Gallery at University of Maryland, College Park. In the winter of 2007-08, Ms. Milad traveled to West Mexico to begin her research and field recordings of local whistling habits.

Call for Entries: "Bright-Shiny New" - A Show of Recent BFA & MFA Graduates

Call for Entries: "Bright-Shiny New" a juried exhibition at Paperwork Gallery scheduled for September, 2008.

Who can apply: Any 2008 Graduate with a BFA or MFA degree from a Maryland, Virginia, or Washington, DC College. Any undergraduate or graduate degree earner from 2008, with a major or focus on Studio Art, is eligible. However, only works with or on paper will be considered.

Application: Please include a one page resume, an artist statement, a CD with 10 jpeg images of works with or on paper, and a $10.00 application fee. Checks should be made out to Paperwork Gallery.

Due Date: August 1, 2008. However, we will accept submissions on a rolling basis, so earlier submissions are better than later. We will also want time to schedule a studio visit, and to choose specific works for the exhibition.

Where: Please mail applications to Paperwork Gallery. 107 E. Preston Street. Baltimore, MD 21202.

A purchase award of several hundred dollars (still to be determined) and a catalogue will be included with this exhibition.