Paris

Emma McMillan, Room 3, 2019, oil on linen, 71 5⁄8 × 47 1⁄2".

Emma McMillan, Room 3, 2019, oil on linen, 71 5⁄8 × 47 1⁄2".

Emma McMillan

Édouard Montassut

Emma McMillan’s first show in Paris comprised six moody nocturnes completed during the Bronx, New York–based painter’s recent three-month residency in the City of Light. Rendered almost entirely in shades of blue, the artist’s murky imagery slowly revealed itself to include interiors, cityscapes, and a portrait. Semiabstract compositions ultimately turned out to depict windowed rooms, a staircase, a skyscraper, a bridge, and a face.

The title of the show, “Bleu de Prusse” (Prussian Blue), singled out just one of the many azure hues in McMillan’s palette. Fittingly, this vibrant synthetic pigment, developed in the early eighteenth century as an alternative to ultraexpensive lapis lazuli powder, is sometimes referred to as “Paris blue.” The fact that it is the traditional color of blueprints is also significant, given McMillan’s background in technical drawing. And although her paintings are

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