Artist Statement & Biography
Predominant in my work over the past year are imagery of interior spaces and the reoccurring pod shape. Interior space imagery includes that of bowls, chairs, caned and woven chair seats, tables, rugs, and quilts.
An heirloom rocking chair in need of restoration was my inspiration to learn to cane, which evolved into an ongoing series of paintings and mixed media works investigating the forms and textures of chairs. These are not simply chairs, but symbols of a complex and ongoing narrative. Chairs have immediate and personal connections to our everyday lives. They can be functional and efficient, a place to rest, a place for conversation, a place to eat, or a treasured heirloom that evokes and preserves memories. My work personifies these chairs, each with its own feeling or presence. Some appear stronger, more purposeful, and upright. Others seem more sensual, graceful and poetic, but they are all made of broken, discarded, used materials.
Ashley Sauder Miller lives with her husband and four children in Harrisonburg, VA. She earned undergraduate degrees from Hesston College (Kansas) and Eastern Mennonite University and her Master of Fine Arts from James Madison University with an emphasis in painting and drawing.
Miller was a finalist for the 2017 William and Dorothy Yeck purchase award in the Young Painters Competition at Miami University. She was a participant in An Artist Residency in Motherhood in conjunction with a local grant though the Arts Council of the Valley in Harrisonburg, Va. She received the Best in Show Award at the Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art's Boardwalk Show in 2016 and was selected for a solo exhibition at VaMOCA's satellite gallery in 2017. She is an artist participant and curator for the 10x10x100 project for Eastern Mennonite University's 2017 Centennial Celebration.