arts & entertainment
Painter Josh McMiller has always confounded expectations. You might not expect a young artist who came of age translating New York City’s dynamic vitality to his canvas would settle in a seaside town like Vero Beach. Nor would you expect him to find the equivalent of Manhattan’s energy in simple renderings of nature. But here he is.
“It’s all there in front of us,” McMiller says. “You just have to look closely enough, hard enough and long enough to sense it. Then, of course, you have to get it on canvas.”
McMiller’s remarkable paintings are on exhibition at the Center for Spiritual Care through Nov. 30 by appointment. The Center is located at 1550 24th Street in Vero Beach, two blocks north of the main public library. Appointments are available by calling 772-567-1233. Further information is on the web at centerforspiritualcare.org.
The show, entitled “Revelations of Nature,” captures the intensity and fire radiated by the plant life around us, says Center Director Carol Ludwig.
“Josh heightens the reality of his subjects in a way that puts us in touch with the force field around them,” she says. “It’s uncommonly notable work.”
McMiller came to Vero Beach directly from Manhattan, where he had been working as a popular fashion model for the Miami-based Ford Agency. He appeared regularly in magazines like GQ, Vogue, Cosmopolitan and for four years was Abercrombie & Fitch’s go-to men’s medium model.
“When I first began to model I might have described myself that way,” McMiller recalls. “But by the time I was in my mid-twenties I knew I was an artist and that changed everything.”
He studied and painted constantly, art serving more as a refuge than a profession for several years. When he was in a position to change course finally, he headed directly for Vero Beach to set up his studio.
Today, the world Josh lives in is a nature-based world. Nature speaks to him constantly, he says, “and it reveals more energy than the senses can possibly absorb. My hope is to share this energy, to make the ordinary beauty of my world extraordinary.”