This is the first collage in the upcoming “The Red Stories” suite. Girls, we are not keeping our mouths shut any longer! This is part of my #metoo story.
An oldie in new clothes! “The Tenants” by Mia Makila, 2019, digital collage (based on a work from 2006).
I am finally back to making art again. It’s been 5 months since I finished the last piece in PhotoShop (The Blue Connection). Being creative is my natural state, so I am starting to feel like myself again. I can see that my style has changed a bit since the last 2 pieces. It has shifted from a darker expression to a more delicate and dreamy style. My collage technique has always been driven by a freudian selection of images – but I work on a much deeper level now. My new collection of works will be my most personal one yet. Like visual diary notes. Who needs therapy when you have a talent to dig into yourself and bring it out as an emotional confession through a clear visual expression?
It is early morning and I am thinking about my new collection No Place Like Home and how it was supposed to be a love story. I have been working on the collection for almost 4 years now. From the time I met Johnny until now when we are broken up – you can follow our love and connection by studying my work. A house adrift. Two houses making a connection. Creating a root system. Sparks. Fire. Then – a separation. A disconnection within the root system. And now what? Am I supposed to end the collection about “finding a home” – on a bad note (with The Blue Connection)? Perhaps I have to continue working on it until something comes along that will create a ‘happy ending’? What if I have to wait for years to find my happy ending?
I will continue working on this collection to see where it’ll take me.
Since I started to scan my own handwriting for my digital works, I have been inspired by the idea of incorporating words, letters and written messages into my paintings as well.
My trauma is so much about language. Words. The lack of them. Repetition. The tone of them. The temperature. Linguistic warfare.
I have always been attracted to words in paintings. Basquiat used it a lot in his paintings. David Lynch as well. Perhaps that is one of the reasons why I am so into early renaissance art – there are a lot of writings in them. I also have a soft spot in my heart for Mexican ex voto paintings (prayer paintings).
Since I was a little girl, I’ve loved to write and make up stories. I got A+ on most my Swedish assignments in school. Writing has always played a big role in the way I express myself. But in my traumas there has been this underlying threat that I am not allowed to express myself through my writing. Especially not about the traumas. Using words in my art is a way for me to rebel against this threat – and a way to break free from the invisible chains I’ve been forced to carry for the last two decades. It is my statement of independence and a way of reclaiming my artistic freedom.
I am completely into the flow of my creativity and I am working on 10 digital pieces and paintings at the same time. But I am not stressed, I feel better than I have in a very long time. So many problems have been solved. I am free from distractions and fears at the moment. It’s just me and my creativity – and Johnny for one hour a day during the weekdays when he’s at lunch. It’s all I need to keep moving forward.
I had a wonderful afternoon with my friend Mats Tusenfot yesterday. I really needed to get out of my apartment – and out of my head for a while. Being two digital horror artists we share so many places inside our minds. Places where a differerat kind of philosophy rules. Where the authentic self is never abandoned. Or overlooked. Not afraid of the dark. Not ashamed of strong emotions. Not interested in what money can buy. Not willing to compromise the artistic expression. It is comforting to meet another otherling who understands the pain, confusion, awe, fear and passion of being different in a world that is like an open wound.
A digital work from 2012
Here is the second collaboration piece by me and Candice Angelini.
I can’t shake the feeling that I’ve wasted so much time – and that time is so very precious. I am waking up from a million mistakes and I can’t afford to waste more time on the wrong things. It stresses me but also motivates me and keeps me inspired me at the same time. I have so much I want to do. I have so much to give. So many things I want to prove to myself.
When it comes to my digital work, I am in an experimental phase and I’m having so much fun! I love it. Most of the times I don’t know what I am doing, but I am trying new things and that’s how I learn. Being self-taught is all about trial and error. I welcome mistakes and ugly drafts, which I eventually abandon. They are all important steps of practice and refining my technique.
OK, so I’m finally done with “Fleurs De Fringe” – my tribute to one of my favorite sci-fi TV series; “Fringe” and the flowers which are of significance in the show – the white tulip, the mutated daisy and the humble little dandelion. I know this is totally nerdy and all, but it gave me an opportunity to practice my technique in digital collage and practice makes perfect.
Now, on to the next project…
Some week ago, I wrote about how I’ll study my creativity as a scientist to see if I use it as rest or play (work), but I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s not about that. I use my creativity as both rest and play and it’s relaxing, fun and hard work at the same time. What I’ve discovered is how I use the different techniques and media to express myself – I am always driven by my core and what it has to say and therefore my creativity is a very intimate force. The digital expressions, writing, digital art, poetry are all based on my innermost feelings and thoughts but I am more flexible here. I can weave my personal stories into a more general expression, something that concerns other people. But with my analogue art – such as painting, mixed media, drawings etc, I feel more protective of the pieces. They don’t concern other people, only me. My analogue art is my most intimate expression, perhaps that’s why it’s so linked to my sexual energy.
My digital art, painting, drawing and mixed media.
“There’s clearly a connection between your creativity and your sexuality – what is it?”, my therapist once asked me. I didn’t understand it at the time. I answered; “Perhaps it’s where I am most traumatized?”, but that isn’t it. During the 7 years where I was creatively blocked, I had a recurring nightmare about pooping in public. “The excrement is your flow, it’s a wishful dream.” She said when I told her about it. And I get it now. The flow of something very intimate that I release in the public arena. It’s coming from me – it’s produced inside me and it’s a mix of old things that my mind, heart and soul have digested and turned into something else. Something new, that want’s to be released. I make something beautiful out of the crap that happened to me in my past. My paintings and drawings are as close as you can get to my core, without knowing anything about me.
I used to feel forced to produce paintings and mixed media pieces for art shows and collectors and that’s when I got all burned out and stopped working. I got blocked, lost my momentum, my self confidence and my ambition to work as an artist. No wonder, that’s not how I’m supposed to treat my analogue art. It is far too precious and magical to me to be used as a cash cow. It’s like selling your soul. I can never go back to working like that again. I have to find a new approach to my art as something I can make money on.
Pictures from my art show “My Pink Hell” in Copenhagen, 2009: