Milicent is a contemporary artist from San Antonio, Texas. Her work revolves around mental health, and uses the process of the making of art to calm down her anxieties and support her with her struggle to find wellness.
As an African American woman suffering from mental heath issues in America her journey is different. Finding a good doctor and establishing a good relationship with health care providers are strained by stigma. Shockingly she's been told ..."you don’t need this or that because you people can’t be trusted to take medication properly". Milicent has been put through unnecessary tests because of a doctor's personal opinion of her appearance and she's been abused for not being the ideal patient.
She loves her appearance, Mow hawks, piercings, and tattoos on her fingers and is proud, while doctors look and treat her differently, If doctors only knew this was how she feels safe in her body. This is how she feels powerful reclaiming her body through modification. Together with making art and writing poetry this is also how she has coped with being sexually assaulted in the past.
In this show:
Candy, is a reference to how the public sees mental illness, as something easily remedied. That it should be easy as candy.
Spheres, because the things Milicent remembers rule her world. Her mind and emotional state are not circular. There is no predetermined path to wellness. She suffers from post traumatic stress disorder and anxiety disorder and painting is her therapeutic exercise for relief. Anxiety disorder affects her ability to start a project. She has to push past that. Remembering the exercise will help her feel better.
Navigating the mental health care system has been a fight for her. A fight to feel safe and stable. Knowing that safe feeling can be removed at any moment by unforeseen circumstances.
Milicent has been in therapy for years. 'Blink' is her realisation that she now has a better understanding of what she needs to feel safe.