In 2001 Miller began a series of paintings based on the dust jackets of Penguin books. By appropriating the iconic Penguin logo, Miller found a way to unite his love of painting and writing. Influenced by Pop art and abstraction, his works draw attention to the inherent possibilities of language within the visual field. In his textual compositions, Miller employs humour, irony and emotion, allowing multiple readings of his fictitious narratives to unfold.
Harland Miller’s print Thought After Filthy Thought was executed in 2019, inspired by a corresponding painting created two years earlier. In Thought After Filthy Thought, Miller explores how colourfield painting and abstraction influence the way in which text is consumed by the beholder. The work has a similar disposition and layout to another print by Miller, titled In Shadows I Boogie.
In line with previous artworks, see Armageddon Is It Too Much To Ask For?for instance, an abstract colour composition occupies the majority of the canvas. It is activated by the text above it, which, as opposed to Miller’s usual setup, serves a secondary purpose. Thought After Filthy Thought is devoid of three dimensional shading. It’s flat surface focuses on conjuring potential narratives for the observer to interpret, by uniting its considerably contrastive visual elements; the bold colours and the subtle text.