Brandon Blane McMillan
My imagery is a manifestation of a life spent amongst windy spaces, falling barns, and pastureland.
My paintings offer a contemporary take on traditional subject matter where I strive to create a balance between realism and abstraction. My representations depict animals, resting or wandering, in a dream-like state within their utopian backdrops. Somewhere within the creation, my art becomes not so much about the subject itself but assumes the role of shedding light into the rhythmic memories of a nostalgic landscape.
Brandon Blane McMillan was born on December 11, 1980, in Valdosta, Georgia to Barry and Angela McMillan. He is the oldest of two McMillan children. Brandon has a younger sister named Andrea. McMillan was raised in South Georgia on his Father and Grandfather’s cattle and tobacco farm. Unbeknownst to him, he was storing imagery, subconsciously, for future art endeavors.
Growing up on his family farm instilled a dedicated work ethic that drives his art today. Working in the fields and creating works of art are such different activities that it’s hard to see how doing one could benefit the other, but for McMillan, that has proven the case. Throughout his childhood, Brandon’s summer days meant planting and harvesting, sun up to sun down. Now as a professional painter, he is in the studio seven days a week. You reap what you sow and he is sowing with great care and attention.
McMillan employs a lengthy creative process, utilizing oils, latex, polymers, and sections of photographs to produce his mixed media paintings. Like his work ethic, McMillan’s imagery often finds its roots in farm-life: Cows, horses, deer, ducks, donkeys, and bears are his heroic protagonists. Lifted from their native environment and introduced to abstract and atmospheric back drops, they mirror the artist’s own transformation across the arc of his life—the gradual merging of agricultural and artistic worlds that has produced this farmer-painter. His animals are formal subjects, notable for their contours, patterns, and textures; they are realistic elements in tension with their abstract surroundings.
The balance between realism and abstraction has become central to McMillan’s thinking about art. He studied painting at Valdosta State University under Harry Ally, who, like Nathan Oliveira, another of McMillan’s influences, renders figures in imagined and painterly environments. To those examples, McMillan adds an appreciation for pure abstraction, the way paint can communicate as paint, looking to artists like Clyfford Still and Gerhard Richter. The whole mix surfaces in McMillan’s work.
Bachelor of Fine Arts(BFA), in Art, Valdosta State University, Valdosta, Georgia 2009
2014 Pryor Fine Art, Atlanta, Georgia
2011 Pryor Fine Art, Atlanta, Georgia
2011 Red Door Records, Valdosta, Georgia
2010 Downtown Center, Nashville, Georgia (solo show)
2010 Benny’s Gallery, Valdosta, Georgia
2010 Hildegard’s Valdosta, Georgia (solo show)
2009 “Overload”, Valdosta State University, Valdosta, Georgia
2009 “Overload”, Annette Howell Turner Center for the Arts, Valdosta, Georgia
2009 “Emerging Southern Artists”, Colquitt County Arts Center, Moultrie, Georgia
2009 Group Competition, Valdosta State University, Valdosta, Georgia
Valdosta State University permanent collection, Valdosta, GA
Franklin Collection, Valdosta, GA (private collection)
Dorsey Collection, Nashville, GA (private collection)