Michael Scott Miller was born in 1969 in Boston, Massachusetts. His family soon moved to Flagstaff, Arizona. Throughout his childhood and university years the mystical nature of the western landscape, especially the desert, as well as the great amount of time he time spent under water alone with his imagination refined his sense of space, color and shape. Miller did his undergraduate work at New Mexico State University, where he was admitted on a swimming scholarship, and received a BA in Social Work in 1991. He went on to receive a BFA in Painting at NMSU (1993) while coaching swimming at the university.Miller developed a body of large-scale abstract work at NMSU and received an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1995. During his time there, his interests expanded and his foundation in abstraction began to lean toward the figurative as he became immersed in the verticality of the city.The Chicago Imagist painters Don Baum and Ray Yoshida were particularly influential for Miller, pushing him to define his quirky style and further articulate his visual thinking toward biomorphic expressionism.
In 1996, Miller moved to Brooklyn, NY and reconnected with the water, this time through surfing. He had had some earlier experience with the sport, but the proximity of the ocean allowed him to pursue it with a new intensity while at the same time inspiring a hybrid style of narrative painting that included silhouettes of surfers and a combination of shape and line, all vibrantly pigmented in a variety of media, ranging from oil to egg tempera. The work was shown in galleries in New York and Los Angeles, as well as at art fairs in LA, Miami and London.
In 2009, Miller was awarded an MTA Arts in Transit commission for the Beach 90 subway station in Far Rockaway, Queens. The five surfing-inspired paintings he made for the project were transformed into faceted glass and “Surf Station 90” was installed in early 2012. In 2017, Miller had works featured at The Villard Mansion on Madison Ave in New York City, the former home of JP Morgan. Also in 2017 Miller had works exhibited at The Bergen College Gallery in Bergen, NJ and at Moremen Moloney Gallery in Louisville, Kentucky. In March of 2018, Miller’s works will be featured at The Elder Gallery of Contemporary Art in Charlotte, North Carolina. Miller continues to live and work in Red Hook, Brooklyn, New York