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For his second solo show at Western Exhibitions\, “In the Garden\,” Dutes Miller presents an installation of new works on paper and sculptures that invokes an ecstatic vision of nature in which homosexua lity is not only included but is the norm. Miller re-imagines Eden as gay c ruising grounds\, a carnal paradise populated by homosexual fauna that hunt one another amongst phallic flora. Although playful and imaginative\, his recent work critically engage with the mythologies surrounding human sexual ity.

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The show opens on Friday\, December 14 with a free public reception from 5 to 8pm.

C ontinuing his exploration of appropriated sexual imagery\, Miller’s new wor ks on paper consist of pages torn from gay porn magazines\, which the artis t has altered by painting over the men with acrylic and gouache. In the res ulting images\, the figures sometimes stand out starkly\, other times they disappear into their environments. The effect is whimsical\, evocative\, an d eerie. The anonymous figures\, identifiable mainly by the color with whic h each is individually embellished\, evoke aspects of gay sexual practices such as cruising and the coordination of desire by strict typology. These w orks also allude to the continuing invisibility of actual homosexual desire in mainstream media despite increased acceptance of gay culture.

Miller’s gallery of monochromatic men overlooks a garden with an Astrot urf floor\, planted with strange fungi and over which distended fruit dangl e. These fleshy plant forms comprise clusters of cast wax fingers and objec ts produced by filling condoms with silicon or plaster. A fountain\, “Linga m” provides the centerpiece of Miller’s polymorphous perverse patch\, its t itle referencing phallic sculptures that represent the Hindu deity\, Shiva. Other works on view augment the charged atmosphere of sexuality\, nature\, and spirituality. “Dicks In\,” for instance\, shows a collaged arrangement of anuses in the form of a mandala. In several works\, such as “Target Pra ctice #2” animal forms predominate\, suggesting a zoology of queer desire.< br />
Dutes Miller’s first solo show at Western Exh ibitions in 2009 was reviewed on Artforum.com\, Time Out Chicago\, New City and th e Chicago Tribune and was named one of the “Top 5 Shows of the Year” by the Chicago Art Review. Miller’s work has been included in exhibitions at White Flag Projects in St. Louis (reviews here and here) and the Ukranian Museum of Art\, 40000 a nd COMA\, all in Chicago His collaborative work with his husband Stan Shell abarger\, as Miller &\; Shellabarger\, won a 2008 Artadia Award and a 20 07 Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation award.. Miller &\; Shellabarger have been written about in Artforum. com\, Art &\; Auction< /span>\, Frieze\, Artnet\, The Art Newspaper\, Flash Art\, TimeOut Chicago\, and t he Chicago Sun-Times. Miller received a BFA from Illinois State Univ ersity and is an accomplished pastry chef. He lives and works in Chicago.

DTEND:20130126 DTSTAMP:20141002T180748 DTSTART:20121214 GEO:41.8830765;-87.6492422 LOCATION:Western Exhibitions\,845 W Washington Blvd. 2nd Floor \nChicago \ , IL 60607 SEQUENCE:0 SUMMARY:In the Garden\, Dutes Miller UID:249503 END:VEVENT BEGIN:VEVENT DTEND:20121214T200000 DTSTAMP:20141002T180748 DTSTART:20121214T170000 GEO:41.8830765;-87.6492422 LOCATION:Western Exhibitions\,845 W Washington Blvd. 2nd Floor \nChicago \ , IL 60607 SEQUENCE:0 SUMMARY:In the Garden\, Dutes Miller UID:249504 END:VEVENT END:VCALENDAR