7 of 10
Wardell Milan is a buff, Tennessee-born Yalie with a penchant for fashion. The characters in his work — mainly collages and photographs — range from Prada spring '11 models to Madonna to himself. When he was the director of scanning at Box Studios, he would see Annie's Leibowitz's and Steven Klein's contact sheets. "There was all this raw material," he says. "I saw how they worked with it until it became a page in a magazine." Now he uses those pages — Fantastic Man, Acne Paper, and the Gentle Woman are favorites — for his own work. The aforementioned photos are taken of elaborate 3D dioramas — weird mini worlds he creates with Pam Anderson, Naomi Campbell, fetishes, drag races… "I like collapsing time and creating a space in which people exist together who normally wouldn't," he says.
He's currently working on drawings of tulips and body builders ("I'm interested in strength and power and how they are faulty") and preparing for a group show in Houston. But he's still most excited about polishing his favorite dioramas.
Click through to see more of Wardell Milan.
Photographed by Tom Hines.