Wardell Milan, Bodybuilder #3, 2012, charcoal on paper, 44×30”
Louis B. James is pleased to present A Series of Inspiring Women, an exhibition of new work by Wardell Milan. Comprised of drawings of female bodybuilders and Milan’s now signature tulips, the show displays the artist’s subtle hand as well as his layered perspective on physicality and beauty.
In his Female Bodybuilders, Milan furthers his exploration of the athletic, muscular body. The subjects of his drawings, taken from industry magazines and combined with other imagery of women from fashion and pornography, hover between the heroic and the grotesque. Viscerally and starkly rendered in charcoal, both large and small in format, Milan’s figures become post-gender warriors, a tribe of contemporary Amazons who through extreme labor transmogrify their bodies and in turn push the contemporary ideal of physical perfection into uncharted realms.
His Tulips stem from his interest in the 17th Century Dutch phenomenon of tulipomania, considered the world’s first economic bubble. Flush with color and expressive flourish, the drawings further complicate notions of beauty, revealing the potential for danger and decay within the ineffably exquisite.
Wardell Milan (b. 1978, Tennessee) lives and works in New York. He has had solo shows at The Studio Museum of Harlem, New York; Taxter and Spengemann, New York; Annurama 404, Naples, Italy; among others. His work has been included in group exhibitions at White Columns, New York; the Bronx Museum of Art, New York; the Museum of the African Diaspora, San Francisco; the National Gallery of Art, Warsaw; and others.
Louis B. James is located at 143b Orchard St, New York. The gallery is open Wednesday through Saturday from 11 to 6 and Sunday from 12 to 6, or else by appointment. For further information please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (212) 533-4670.