Los Angeles

Michael C. McMillen

Asherfaure Gallery

Artifice, violence, and nostalgia are the silent residents of Michael McMillen’s precisely rendered environments. His is the world of back alleys near rundown oceanside apartments, the littered hallways of abandoned buildings, and deserted streets at night. Wandering disoriented among his works one appreciates McMillen’s power to convince us of the reality of his precincts through the sheer detail of his observation and the spellbinding precision of his illusionism. Using lenses and mirrors he can make a three-dimensional miniaturized scene appear life-size, then, reversing himself, fill up actual rooms with an avalanche of carefully selected props, transforming them into a run-down garage, the innards of an oceangoing freighter, or another such familiar but improbable environment of his invention. Manufactured illusion is a major industry in Southern California, and McMillen’s technical

to keep reading

Artforum print subscribers have full access to this article. Please sign in below.

Not registered for artforum.com? Register here.

SUBSCRIBE NOW and save up to 65% off the newsstand price for full online access to this issue and our archive.

Order the PRINT EDITION of the February 1983 issue for $17 or the ONLINE EDITION for $5.99.

* This rate applies to U.S. domestic subscriptions.