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Robbie Miller
Huntington Beach, CA

MFA , 2006
California State
University Fullerton


BFA, 2003

Columbia College Chicago

It is 7:00 pm on a weekday night, which means Jeopardy followed by Wheel of Fortune.  If it’s Monday then there is Dancing with the Stars, and Deal or no Deal.  Tuesday is another Dancing with the Stars and American Idol, which is also on Wednesday.  Thursday is Survivor and Friday is Amazing Race.  At any given time during the day Bravo will show marathons of Top Chef, Project Runway or Shear Genius.  Since it is summer break next week, I will be able to watch the Price is Right at 10:00 am. 
    It is 2007, which means I am 34 years old, married, an adjunct college teacher, living in a two-bedroom coach house apartment in Huntington Beach California.  At this point in my life, I have just gotten out of class so I am wearing brown Dickies, a v-neck t-shirt, a striped short sleeved collared button up shirt, and black socks.  My hair has gotten long and my beard could use some trimming.  I am sitting with my pregnant wife on our crimson red couch by the television.  On our Ikea coffee table in front of us is a variety of Styrofoam containers with our dinner, Thai food from Thai Wave a few blocks down the street.  For the next few hours I will spend my time watching game shows and reality TV.  It is a role that I have found myself quite comfortable with.  What I am not doing is standing on a cold cement floor in a studio surrounded by paper clips of inspiration, overflowing jars of cigarette butts, and smells of oil paint and solvents.   Tonight I will not be going to a cloudy Cederesque bar and drunkenly argue about esthetic and concept.  No, my actual role and my previous intention as an artist have changed.  Elizabeth Schambelon once said in an article about Diane Arbus that there is a gap that exists between intention and effect and it is this gap that the artists observes and records.  I think this relates to both the physical process of creating objects, and where we find ourselves when we come up with the concepts that turn into art objects. My work starts with an action or performance and an object is created with documentation by photography, video, and word of mouth.  For the performance, I am interested in illustrating the routine of the everyday activity and the actions that define our roles in our immediate societies.  I am also fascinated by the clothing and props, which like a costume define roles and sub-cultures.  As I am sitting in my living room watching these shows, I can’t help but wonder what makes a game show contestant right for a particular show.  There is the obvious, Jeopardy contestants must be smart, and Survivor contestants must be athletic, but there is more.  They must have a certain personality that fits the shows profile.  They are all like performance artists who study the show, observing the little quirks of past contestants, and then wait in line all day to audition to supposedly be themselves.  They are performing like an everyday person.  I have noticed that each show can be defined by the contestants’ mannerisms and physical appearance.  I wonder if I can mold myself to fit the role of any given show by appearances only.  To start with, I wonder what I would wear if I was on Survivor.

 
- Robbie Miller
  May, 2007

 


What I Would Wear if I Was on Jeopardy, 2007
Digital C-Print,  20" x 30"



What I Would Wear if I Was on Amazing Race, 2007
Digital C-Print,  20" x 30"



What I Would Wear if I Was on Price is Right, 2007
Digital C-Print,  20" x 30"


What I Would Wear if I Was on American Idol, 2007
Digital C-Print,  20" x 30"



What I Would Wear if I Was on Survivor, 2007
Digital C-Print,  20" x 30"


What I Would Wear if I Was on Dancing with the Stars, 2007
Digital C-Print,  20" x 30"



What I Would Wear if I Was on Project Runway, 2007
Digital C-Print,  20" x 30"



What I Would Wear if I Was on Shear Genius, 2007
Digital C-Print,  20" x 30"



What I Would Wear if I Was on Top Chef, 2007
Digital C-Print,  20" x 30"



What I Would Wear if I Was on, On the Lot 2007
Digital C-Print,  20" x 30"



What I Would Wear if I Was on Wheel of Fortune, 2007
Digital C-Print,  20" x 30"


What I Would Wear if I Was on Deal or No Deal, 2007
Digital C-Print,  20" x 30"