Perry Milou is one of the nation’s foremost recognized pop artists. Critics and collectors have hailed his bold, vibrant palette over the past 20 years. Considered a talented forward-thinker with classic, iconic inspirations, Milou’s work has often been described as alluring, brilliant, fresh and glamorous. He creates a blend of pop culture contemporary art that is frequently a tribute to global icons, Americana and celebrities.
Milou first gained recognition in Philadelphia, with paintings of local sports heroes and landmarks which he created outdoors in a high traffic area of the city where people could see him and his work. He takes an original approach while drawing influence from masters – pop stylings of Peter Max and Andy Warhol, skills of Edgar Degas and brushstrokes of Vincent Van Gogh.
In the late 2000s, he developed a technique which he called “rain,” dripping oil paint vertically down the canvas, creating the sensation of looking through a rain streaked window. An example of this technique is The Dreary Dean, which depicts the tragic moodiness of James Dean in portrait. Other works combined Swarovski crystals with his painting technique, like his Vegas Icons Playing Cards series. His portfolio’s long list of recognizable figures includes names such as Liz Taylor, Marilyn Monroe, Frida Kahlo, Geronimo, Frank Sinatra, George W. Bush, Sophia Loren, Chazz Palminteri, Jackie Kennedy, Madonna, Sylvester Stallone, Elvis Presley, Lady Gaga, Bruce Springsteen and Albert Einstein. In 2007, his Marilyn Monroe series was featured in the Marilyn in Art book published by Cantor Publishing Group.
In 2015, Milou’s painting, A Prayer for Peace became the official licensed portrait by The World Meeting of Families for the Papal visit to Philadelphia. Milou created a series of paintings he coined The Faces of Francis. The first licensed painting A Prayer for Peace portrayed Francis in profile blowing a kiss with the Earth as the background, painted in Milou’s “rain” technique. A Prayer for Peace is priced at $1,000,000 with a majority of the proceeds designated to charity.
In the late 90s, during the very start of his career, Perry opened American Milou’s Studio for Children in Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania. Through the 2000s, he was involved in philanthropic organizations such as co-founder of Philadelphia Art for ALS and the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. He has sold several paintings in silent auctions and donated the proceeds to charitable organizations.
Milou was raised in the Cheltenham-Mount Airy and Haverford, suburbs near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He graduated from the University of Arizona, where he studied graphic design and illustration. While attending school, he was the first student to convince the Bachelor of Fine Arts program to include “open studio” as a major in 1990. After college he moved back to Philadelphia. Milou now resides in Pennsylvania with his wife, daughter and son.