Miles Halpern

I am a multimedia artist, illustrator, and teacher, with an emphasis in drawing and painting. A common subject in my work is the human figure, often used as a vehicle to think about human relationships on an individual, community, and societal level. I have explored this through embedding myself into communities by doing portrait projects, community murals designed to empower and represent minority groups, and through autobiographical inspired surrealistic paintings, drawings and collages. As someone who often feels like they are on the outside looking in, making artwork representing human subjects helps me to better understand and empathize with the human spirit, as well as my own.

As an educator at a community college, my students come from diverse backgrounds, culturally, economically, and academically. With this in mind I strive to design projects that encourage students to experiment and play, allowing the student’s individuality to be expressed in the creative decisions they make while problem-solving. Their projects often require non-traditional approaches to historically traditional subject matter. Examples range from turning drawings into installations, creating sculptures in a painting class, to creating animated puppets from life drawings in a figure drawing class. I reinforce their studio instruction with references to historical and contemporary artists relevant to their work, with diversity, equity, and inclusion in mind.