Harland Miller: In Shadows I Boogie Essays by Michael Bracewell, Martin Herbert and Catherine Ince

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The most comprehensive monograph to date on the British artist and writer best known for his paintings based on the dust jackets of early Penguin paperbacks

This monograph covers nearly 20 years of his paintings, and features three newly commissioned essays by eminent art writers Michael Bracewell, Martin Herbert and Catherine Ince that explore different aspects of his practice. It includes an illustrated chronology with photographs and ephemera from the artist's personal archive.

"Harland Miller is known as the creator of figurative paintings and works on paper, many of which depict the iconic designs of Penguin paperback books and bear the artist’s name as author, with the fictitious title of each being wittily deadpan, punkish and aphoristic." —Michael Bracewell

Michael Bracewell considers Miller’s work within the broader art historical context of painting, from abstract expressionism onwards: particularly thinking about his artistic influences and the work Miller saw during his time living in New York in the 1990s.

"Particularly upfront in their humour are those of his paintings which suggest the unwritten or perhaps just obscure books of modern literary greats and that merrily caricature their styles." —Martin Herbert

Martin Herbert explores the way Miller’s use of abbreviated language prefigures that of social media by several decades.

"Penguin's covers varied greatly within the structured composition system at work within their design identity, and Miller’s rigorous enquiry charts the subtle and episodic evolution of the Penguin book in design terms." —Catherine Ince

Catherine Ince delves into design history and analyzes Miller’s work in the context of the current trend for mid-century modern design, Miller pre-empted with his book cover paintings.

"It seems I'm often holding two opposing ideas in my head at the same time, either that or I’m constantly oscillating between the two – and I think you can read this sort of interplay in my work... So I wanted some shape or form within the paintings’ composition to represent this."

Harland Miller on his most recent work, Cuboids.

Published in two color versions, specially designed by Miller, the book’s edges are printed with a dripping paint motif to replicate his dynamic painting process.

(Please note that the color version cannot be pre-selected and will be delivered at random).


  • Format: Hardback
  • Size: 320 x 230 mm (12 5/8 x 9 in)
  • Pages: 266 pp
  • Illustrations: 180 illustrations
  • ISBN: 9780714875583

Yorkshire-born Harland Miller has exhibited at ICA, White Cube, and Royal Academy in London; BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead; and Kunsthalle, Mannheim, and Blain Southern, Berlin.

Michael Bracewell is a British novelist, critic, curator, and cultural commentator.

Martin Herbert is a Berlin-based writer and critic.

Catherine Ince is senior curator for V&A East, and was previously curator at the Barbican, London.

"Featuring essays from arts writers Michael Bracewell and Martin Herbert, and curator Catherine Ince, this book delves into Miller's creative process. It traces his artistic influences, locating his work within the context of abstract expressionism and modern design. It also includes photographs and personal items from Miller's archive."—The Arts Society magazine

"Harland Miller's playful paintings are the subject of a new monograph... The monograph [is] a splashy testament to Miller's staying power... Miller is a consummate and sincere storyteller... The exhibition in Asia enables Miller once more to meditate on the interplay between textural forms and the materiality of paint."—Financial Times

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