Judy Millar

Essay by Rosemary Hawker.

Be Do Be Do Be Do

Judy Millar’s solo exhibition at the Institute of Modern Art (IMA) Brisbane.

8th June – 27th July 2013.

Every time I make a painting I’m dragging the whole history of painting with me. — Judy Millar

Judy Millar: Be Do Be Do Be Do

Auckland painter Judy Millar has been making ever bigger paintings. A few years back, she surprised and confounded her audience by enlarging her painterly gestures using a billboard printer—it seemed heretical. Was this painting proper or something else? In Be Do Be Do Be Do, she goes the other way, hand-painting monstrously enlarged half-tone dots on ribbons of bendy-ply, which are contorted into complex curves, creating a play between the Arp-like biomorphism of the painted imagery and the Serra-like architecture of the scrolling wood. One curly painting, sitting on its edge, barricades a gallery; one, mounted to the wall, is all fleshly folds and love handles; another hangs from the ceiling from a harness, unfurling, flaccid, across the floor, revealing its pink underside. Rosemary Hawker reads Millar’s project through Susan Stewart’s interest in the play between the miniature (the world within the world) and the gigantic (the world without world).

Rosemary Hawker publication by IMA Brisbane, Australia. Available here.