Mysterious Joe Miller
A Life Tied Down by Wheels, On the Streets, In a Wig.
door Kate Hassett
Joe Miller lives on the streets of Portland, Maine. He has been without housing since 2007, and restricted to a wheelchair since 2002. He is transgender: though born a male he feels more like a woman. When time and energy allow he dresses in women’s clothing. Somedays he’s a combination of a long-haired lady and a rough bearded man all in one wheelchair-bound body.
Joe was diagnosed with schizophrenia in his youth, and still struggles with it in adulthood. Medical care is one of his top priorities with weekly chiropractic appointments and regular doctor’s visits, but he expresses that it is more difficult for him to seek psychiatric care.
In the meantime, he is able to ignore the voices he hears in his head that call his name in a gruff whisper, and passes the time wheeling from place to place in Portland, crocheting bikinis, drinking coffee, drawing portraits and trying to make all his doctor’s appointments.
With a BA in Human Ecology, Kate Hassett finds herself wandering the tunnels of her mind in search of creative inspiration and eccentric interpretations of her external surroundings. Personal exploration and reflection led her to Salt Institute for Documentary Studies, where she was drawn to the stories of artists, homelessness, and Sturgeon. She is currently filling her days with knitting, gardening, walking with her Bassett Hound, baking, knitting, milking cows, drawing, photographing and [more or less] patiently finding her way.