Michael McMillan


Photo courtesy of Franklyn Rogers © 2014

Michael McMillan is a London based writer, dramatist, artist/curator and scholar of Vincentian migrant heritage. His plays and performance pieces have been produced by the Royal Court Theatre, Channel 4, BBC Radio 4 Drama, and across the UK. Since the 1990s McMillan’s practice has taken a more interdisciplinary approach using devised performance, installation and mixed media in a collaborative context. Sometimes emerging from residencies, this work has been produced in site-responsive and public spaces and or culminated in publications that McMillan has edited and compiled. McMillan’s practice has developed out of a pragmatic necessity to pay the rent!

His interdisciplinary practice uses mixed-media installation and curatorial work and includes: The West Indian Front Room (Geffrye Museum 2005-06), Van Huis Uit: The Living Room of Migrants in The Netherlands (Imagine IC, Amsterdam and Netherlands tour 2007–2008), The Beauty Shop (198 Contemporary Arts & Learning 2008), A Living Room Surrounded by Salt (IBB, Curacao 2008), The Waiting Room (Stories & Journeys, Gwynedd Museum & Art Gallery, Bangor 2012), I Miss My Mum’s Cooking (Who More Sci-Fi Than Us, KAdE Kunsthal, Amersfoort 2012), My Hair: Black Hair Culture, Style & Politics (Origins of the Afro Comb, MAA, Cambridge 2013).

McMillan’s books include: Living Proof: Views of a World living with HIV/AIDS (Artist Agency, 1992), The Black Boy Pub & Other Stories: the black experience in High Wycombe (Wycombe District Council, 1997), Growing Up Is Hard To Do: A Book For Young People & Adults About Sexual Health (Young People’s Health Project, 2000), The Front Room: Migrant Aesthetics in the Home (Black Dog, 2009).

In 2015, McMillan’s recreation of the Walter Rodney Bookshop as an installation will form part of No Colour Bar: Black Art in Action 1960-1990 (Guildhall Art Gallery, July 2015-January 2016) and Rockers, Soulheads & Lovers will begin a national tour (New Art Exchange, Nottingham, October 2015 – January 2016). He has the first Arts Doctorate from Middlesex Univ. (2010) and is currently an Associate Lecturer in Cultural & Historical Studies at London College of Fashion, and Associate RAS Researcher (UAL). Michael has recently become a Research Associate with the Visual Identities in Art & Design Research Centre (VIAD) at the University of Johannesburg, where he curated The Front Room ‘Inna Joburg’ (2016).

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