Troy Montes Michie: Rock of Eye Catalogue
Stitches and sutures: tracing the body and landscape in Troy Montes Michie's collages
To tailor a garment by “rock of eye” is to rely on the drape—on experience over mathematical measurement—in the fitting process. It is a kind of drawing in space—a freehand, an intuition, a trust of materials. Rock of Eye, published on the occasion of Troy Montes Michie’s (born 1985) solo exhibition at the California African American Museum, is a collection of the artist’s collages, drawings, and found and woven images sourced from vintage erotic magazines, French tailoring magazines, found photographs and other materials. These materials are familiar from Montes Michie’s recent large-scale paintings and collages that center on the Black male body and his series that traces the social history and form of the zoot suit. Troy Montes-Michie was born in El Paso and his practice reflects his experience growing up along the US/Mexico border. This book is a study in ambiguity between portraiture and landscape; his are the cuts and folds of patterning and mapping. In Rock of Eye, Montes Michie’s stitches suture histories and geographies; they establish thresholds for crossing; his needle hits rock. Including essays by Tina Campt and editor Andrea Andersson, with an interview by Brent Edwards, Rock of Eye is a tactile and sensuous artist’s book recalling the form of fabric swatch books and affirming that collage is an art of selection.