Harland Miller is a writer and artist. Born in Yorkshire in 1964, he studied at the Chelsea School of Art, graduating in 1988 with an MA. Miller released his first novel Slow Down Arthur, Stick to Thirty to critical acclaim in 2000. In the same year he published a novella titled First I was Afraid, I was Petrified, which was a study of obsessive compulsive disorder, based on a hoard of hundreds of Polaroids of oven knobs, all turned to "off" which were taken by one of his relatives and subsequently found by Miller.
Miller is probably best known for his giant canvases and limited edition prints of Penguin book covers. The titles are sardonic statements about life, including Whitby - The Self Catering Years, Rags to Polyester - My Story, York, So Good They Named It Once, and Incurable Romantic Seeks Dirty Filthy Whore.
In 2008, Miller curated a group exhibition called You Dig the Tunnel, I'll Hide the Soil to mark the bicentenary of the birth of Edgar Allen Poe. Staged across two venues in Shoreditch, Miller exhibited several new works including I Was Always Good at Finding Things, which comprised seven live forensic figures inside a cordoned area, examining it for evidence of a serious crime.
In 2009, Miller turned his attention to the police campaign mounted against the Yorkshire Ripper in 1978 that had been misconstrued by the hoax letter and tapes sent by John Samuel Humble (aka Wearside Jack). At the exhibition at the BALTIC, Miller painted a series of large billboards entitled The Consequence of a Failed Illusion (West Yorkshire Police Public Information Campaign) which had been torn to reveal a series of adverts, catch-phrases and imagery alongside samples of Wearside Jack's writing or emergency number calls.
Miller has participated in group shows at the Royal Academy and the ICA in London and Kunsthalle in Germany. His solo exhibitions include shows at White Cube (London and Hong Kong), Ingleby Gallery in Edinburgh, Blaine Southern in Berlin, Marianne Boesky Gallery in New York and the aforementioned BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art in Gateshead. In 2019, he held a homecoming show Harland Miller: York, So Good They Named It Once at the York Art Gallery.
Miller has seen demand for his work (particularly his much-loved Penguin book covers) rise significantly in the last 5 years. In March 2019, two paintings owned by the late singer George Michael (Death, What's In It For Me and Incurable Romantic Seeks Dirty Filthy Whore) set new auction records for the artist at Christies. He currently lives and works in London.