Mills Brown is a visual artist based in Washington, DC. Originally from South Carolina, Mills graduated from American University in 2017 with an MFA in Studio Art, following a BA in English and Art History from Wofford College in 2015. Mills has exhibited solo shows in Washington, DC and South Carolina. Most recently, she exhibited a two-person exhibition with Celeste Caldwell at Redux Contemporary Art Center in Charleston, SC. During the 2020 pandemic Mills also exhibited work in online group shows with Create Magazine, Visionary Art Collective, and I Like Your Work, among others.
With translucent acrylic washes, collaged photos, bright oil pens and matte flashe paint, I reimagine domestic scenes and hazy Southern landscapes. An interest in ornamentation connects my work visually, while themes of memory, childhood, womanhood, family and safety surface throughout. Many works engage in the idea of a painting as a moment in a larger story. I’m influenced by the Southern Gothic literary genre, and the novels I read often find their way into my paintings. Among themes of family estrangement, the supernatural, decay, and racial injustice, the Southern Gothic genre illuminates the pressures of the past upon the present. In envisioning the narrative possibilities of a painting, I wish to seek out what this genre means to our contemporary moment, and how I might explore it with a full and particular visual language.