NEW! “Red Story nr. 3”

“Red Story nr. 3” by Mia Makila, 2019. Digital collage. Edition of 5. Available.

DETAILS:
This is the third piece of my “Red Story” suite – a visual series about the traumas I am slowly overcoming. Instead of my usual perspective of examining the emotions of the survivor/victim (me), I am focusing on the crazy actions and bizarre behavior of the abusers. In the third story piece I am exploring the strange behavior of one of my ex boyfriends. Our relationship was based on a power imbalance. I lived in his house, he was a ‘master’ – dominant, in control, better, stronger, smarter – whilst I was made into a submissive ‘lolita’, a living doll, an object, weaker, dependent and isolated. This imbalance had many dimensions – it was economical, material, physical, emotional, psychological and sexual.
 
During our first year of living together in his house, he had a bizarre ritual of unzipping his pants right after he had served me dinner, then he would take out his (soft) dick and place it on the dining table and would just be standing like that for a while – so proud of himself and his ‘thing’. This usually happened when the family across the street (a mom, dad and two teenage boys) also were having their dinner and could see him standing like that, through their window. I would do what all good girls are supposed to do in situations where men make us uncomfortable – I would giggle.
 
But after I was out of this toxic relationship, I started to question this absurd routine. What was he trying to tell me – with his dick on the table, next to the food I was about to enjoy? What did he demonstrate? Was it an act of intimidation, a power demonstration, psychological abuse or perhaps an expression of a sexual fetish (with the eyes of our neighbor family as an important factor)?

NEW! “The Tragic Death Of Observation Cat”

“The Tragic Death Of Observation Cat” by Mia Makila, 2019. Digital ultrachrome print on cotton archival paper. Edition of 5. Available.

Details:
Earlier this year I found an abandoned piece from 2012 of a very angry observation cat (appropriately based on a recurring nightmare where I feel forced to pet a cat which I forgot I had so it hasn’t been fed or nurtured for years – and it is dusty and starving and the fur is covered with eyeballs). 

NEW! “The Lolita Express”

“The Lolita Express” by Mia Makila, 2019. New media collage. Limited edition. Available.

I’ve never put so much work into a digital piece before, been working around the clock with this one. It was fun to do but the story behind it is awful and disturbing – about the private jet plane “Lolita Express” – owned by Jeffrey Epstein. What a horrible concept and I feel so much compassion and sadness for those poor girls. My heart is reaching out to them through this intense piece. I hope you like it and fins your own stories in it as well.

NEW! “Hitman”

This is the first time ever I have made a visual representation of the physical abuse I endured for the 5 years I was married to a violent man. I was only 19 years old when I met him. He was my first love and the relationship left many scars and wounds (and PTSD). It has taken me 30 years to be able to create a ‘portrait’ of his violent behavior, I usually depict images of my own emotions and reactions (fear. anxiety and rage). I have very clear memories of his physical abuse: his swinging arms, the slow and steady walk in my direction, before he would wrestle me to the floor – and his multiple faces: the man I love, the man I feared and the man I lost every time he turned evil. The focus in my art has opened up, from the focus of my fear and rage – to exploring the sick behavior of the abuser. Also giving him a face, like a mailbox, a place to return the responsibility, the shame and darkness to its rightful owner.
“Hitman” is dedicated to all victims and survivors of domestic abuse.  ♥

New work! “My Prerogative”

“My Prerogative” by Mia Makila, 2019. Acrylic and color pencils on canvas, 60×60 cm. Click to enlarge.

I dedicate this painting to all women and girls in Alabama, USA. The only person entitled to make a decision about their body is the owner of the body. Especially when it comes to such a profound decision of creating a life or choosing not to.. Women are like God that way (if you believe in one, I don’t) and you don’t interfere with God’s plan. The red cross in her back symbolizes delusional religious people and conservatives – who believe they are entitled to judge, force, exclude, punish, hate and make decisions for other people (in this case women). I was abused by a man of faith and during the attacks of physical and psychological abuse he used to shout: “I must beat the devil out of you! You have the devil inside you and he makes you into a whore!”

I will never stop fighting for women’s right to their bodies, sexuality, expression and independence.

Where do I belong?

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Me at the opening of my debute solo show as a horror artist, 2007

For the first time ever, I’ve tried to define myself as an artist and my style in an artist statement for my new website. It’s really hard. What is my ambition as an artist? What drives me? What genre does my art belong to? I’ve gone through many styles throughout my career;  neo-victorian horror, lowbrow, gothic, popsurrealism and art brut. Perhaps it’s because I’ve gone through so many personal transformations as well. My styles vary a lot but I do see a theme running through all my works – balancing the raw and the delicate.

I feel at home in genres like primitive art, naÏve art, folk art and outsider art – with a twist of lowbrow.. But am I an outsider artist? I do feel like an outsider and I deal with traumas and primitive expressions in my art but an outsider artist lives completely outside society’s conventions and rules. Perhaps I’m too obedient to consider myself to be an outsider artist. But I could make my own art genre. Primitive expressionism? Outsider-lowbrow? It’s really hard. The word ‘outsider’ rings true to me because I’m also an outsider in the Swedish art community. I Googled ‘outsider art’ in my hometown and the word or concept doesn’t even exist here:

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I feel like this could be my future mission – to create a place for myself and other artists like me – and people who belong to the outsider genre but doesn’t even know they are artists because they live in mental institutions or are isolated in some way. It would be a beautiful mission.