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Public Sphere

Jennifer McMillan

AlienHorseHumanFemale, armature performer, non-identical twin, paper mâché enthusiast.

I like to work within the realms of the unsure and ask questions.

A confused northerner born in Barrow-in-Furness and currently living in London. I am developing my open relationship with the city while romanticising for my long distanced relationship with my home town. A conflict I write about in Two Destination Language's book Field Notes: Two.

Other publications include Seven Sentences by Seven Horses, published by New Critique. My work Shadow Clock, commissioned by Signal Film and Media, Barrow in Furness and Tullie House, Carlisle, has been added to the collection of Tullie House where is it on display indefinitely. In 2019 I performed in Under my Skirt in the Perth Fringe Festival, Australia, a performance I had been developing since graduating Lancaster University in 2016.

Show Location: Battersea campus: Studio Building, Second floor

Using performance, sculpture and writing I critique how social-constructions and pre-existing narratives can control us. Through the creation of fictitious characters, I explore our place in society. I like to use my own body to perform the characters I create as a way to learn and embody multiple possibilities and stories. I’m interested in how an art practice can begin to self-produce and write a narrative for itself outside of the artist’s control. My work encourages questions and conversations around gender, power, ownership, stereotypes, and femininity. Using accessible materials and low fi aesthetics is becoming increasingly important to me as I grow more disappointed with art institutions governed by exclusivity and fickle trends. My current work aims to be critical but fun, silly and playful.

The Monologues [excerpts]by Greeny, Pink Horse, Julien and Gold Horse
Pink Horse
Julien
Gold Horse
Greeny
Gold Horse and Pink Horse
Greeny in Space

Excerpt from The Greeny Complex

"What’s the point when my home becomes machinery that structures my body, becomes the apparatus penetrating me and I am constantly wondering why I was named a broken horse before I was a broken horse, but I was sent to war and I came back feeling broken, but people said I was a hero, but I don’t want to be, I never wanted to fight, I wanted to be a mustang or a black beauty, a free horse, but choices are limited when you’re a standard, off-the-rack horse, not much to look at; when you’re more blue and droopy than beauty on cue, grappling over how the cruelty of duty hits you hardest when you realise, your duties are trickeries, uneasy saddles and fraudulent ropes pulling you and riding you to the whim of a rider who wrote a bad performance…condemning the pawns of the play to get lost on the footpath most travelled, revolving on the cusp of anticipated encounters- I met a horse who claims his feet are stuck to the ground and is always trying to convince me that my feet are stuck too, this horse is a staunch critic of our circular lineage whereas I have approached it entirely defeated for I do not think much of our leader with his promises to make our merry go round merry again but hands our bodies over to every bidder believing his consent to be the same as my consent and what am I even paid with I ask, if money then whose, if life then my own or yours or another’s – I would have been happy with some carrots, maybe an apple, but I whinny and I neigh and I run but never get anywhere and I sometimes feel like I am trespassing, which must sound silly as I travel the same route every day but the dawn is like a reset button inviting the unwanted novelties of being the brunt of a joke that I ride towards every day always in the same direction regardless of scandal, provocation, arousal or rouse for what was once fun has become a heavy responsibility and my duplicity has emerged as naturally as drawing in breath, but I am afraid I am speaking out of turn, what am I doing, what’s the point when my body has become machinery."

-A Blue Horse, February 2021