Karin Miller: in depth

Karin Miller: in depth

A while ago I interviewed one of my favourite local artists, Karin Miller, about her art work, personal history and the inspiration behind her beautiful pieces.

Karin Miller, self-portrait
Karin Miller, self-portrait

Because magazine space is always so hotly contested over, and there is always more information than we have space for, not all of the nuances of our interview made it into the mag – and the Need to Meet section is especially limited (look below):

Marie Claire July 2012 issue
Karin Miller on pg 134 of the July 2012 issue of Marie Claire

Since the Internet has a vast ocean of space, I thought we could publish Karin Miller in her own words and share some more about this very talented artist. Enjoy.


‘As a white lady I always had black ladies around me growing up with me and raising me. I think they are beautiful, which is why they feature in so much of my art. All of my artworks have a message. In the beginning, my first exhibition, there was empathy for everyone, then resentment over Apartheid and finally the pandemonium of politics. It’s always tongue in cheek. I did a book with Orms in Cape Town that really explains the concept behind my works.

I’m a white, female, South African, Afrikaans woman and grew up in Pretoria. I studied graphic design at Technicon, and worked as a graphic designer for a few years; but I always wanted to do fine art. I started studying Fine Arts at Unisa but didn’t finish it because I had children – four of them. Later I did a course in [Adobe] Photoshop at Unisa. Before that I painted and I drew, but Photoshop is really my medium.

Every morning, instead of doing anything else, I played on Photoshop. It took me so many hours, for years, of playing on Photoshop before I was capable of creating my artworks.

Then six to seven years ago I made a website and the guy that I’m exhibiting with found it, liked my art works and decided to put them on show in Franschoek [in the Holden Manz collection]. He exhibited everything I had done over the years. I was very apprehensive, but it worked out so successfully. People coming to the galleries loved my works, and the little exposure I got was always good.

In the beginning I painted the backgrounds and scanned in found images and photographs I took. I love patterns and bring these into my works. I use layers, lots and lots of layers. You almost have to be obsessed.

Karin Miller - Girl Holding Flower
‘Girl Holding Flower’
Karin Miller - Leaves me reeling
‘Leaves me reeling’

Karin Miller is on permanent exhibition at the Holden Manz collection in Franschoek. Please contact them to purchase her works.


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