By Tucker Harris EBS Staff
BOZEMAN – Miles Glynn, a Bozeman-based artist, brings elements from past popular culture into a more contemporary context through his art.
A self-taught artist, Glynn started his creative journey with photography. As a child, he watched his father, a photojournalist in the U.S. Army, capture images to convey stories and would tag along in the dark room with him. Decades later, in 2018, Glynn assumed his own way to convey stories using a technique reminiscent of his time spent with his dad in the dark room but all his own: silk-screening.
Silk-screening is the process of pushing ink through a mesh screen that acts as a stencil and then prints the image onto a surface. The method has been the same for hundreds of years, but gained prominence in the 1960’s when Andy Warhol made it his primary medium.
“To really do [silk-screening] well you also need healthy doses of finesse, flexibility, and thinking outside the box, which is more the art of the process,” said Glynn, who appropriates old western imagery into large-scale modern pieces. “I’m constantly bouncing between the two aspects in order to achieve the vision I have for any given piece.”
Glynn hopes the subject matter he uses from old magazines, movies and advertisements pulled into a modern context will compel his clients and viewers to learn more about the materials’ back stories. His subject matter toggles between 1960s pop and Western culture, including past characters like Elvis and Brigitte Bardot, anonymous fiction characters of cowgirls and cowboys, and natural scenes.
Glynn became a full-time professional artist just three years ago when he started showing his work at the Emerson for the Arts and Culture in Bozeman. As the physical scale of his pieces grew as well as the demand for his work, he outgrew his space at the Emerson and moved into his own studio in downtown Bozeman.
Being relatively new to the field, Glynn says he’s learning more about certain influences and inspirations like Andy Warhol in a more “after-the fact” way—after becoming an artist full-time, that is. Just last week, Glynn visited The Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, where he learned more about the techniques and methods Warhol used.
It was an amazing experience, he said, to compare the way he uses silk screening today to how an influence like Warhol performed in the medium.
“Rather than focusing on a narrow subject and style… I tend to work very wide with a lot of different looks, subject matter, and color palettes. I’m just constantly chasing ideas,” he said.
Some of the new ideas Glynn is chasing will be on display at Courtney Collins Fine Art Gallery here in Big Sky February 2022.
The winter exhibition will be titled “Western Lights”and will feature two series debuts. Both will align with Glynn’s goals for his art: imagery that connects the familiar and unfamiliar together.
The series titled “Branded” will compare corporate, popular brands and logos with traditional, agricultural brands that are burned onto cattle.
The second series he will be debuting at this exhibition will be titled “Western Social Club,” featuring juxtapositions between Western portraits with social media elements.
Each piece at the “Western Lights” show will be mixed media incorporating lit-up traditional neon glass. The exhibition will open Feb. 18, and Glynn promises it to be “a bright and fun show” for the Big Sky community and visitors alike.
“My goal is just to continue to evolve and advance as an artist… I’m just enjoying the opportunity to every day wake up and cultivate ideas and execute those ideas.”