The Art Incubator Gallery: October 15 – November 27, 2021
I am interested in depicting the distance between people, a sense that a person’s interior world is permanently inaccessible to the viewer. In that absence I think there is a tendency to project the viewer’s own narrative and emotions onto the image. I strive to create paintings that leave space between the painted figures and the viewer, a space for reaction, connection and emotion.
Over the course of 2020, I was preoccupied with the idea of stasis. I have been trained from a young age to detest stasis, equating it with indolence, a failure to be productive. The paintings I created during this period were a space in which I could grapple with this and become more comfortable with the strange time we were living through. My paintings are a way for me to express the power in stillness. I have chosen to depict moments of inaction and waiting. The space around my figures, be it an expanse of green grass or the claustrophobic confines of a glass reflection, is an important element. This space alternates between feeling too close and too large, too full and too empty. I am interested in depicting loneliness not only in my paintings of isolated figures, but within relationships. I seek to invest my figures with a certain melancholy, a sense that their interior worlds are both rich and opaque, a mystery to the viewer.
Megan Klak is an Edmonton-based artist and writer currently enrolled in MacEwan’s Arts and Cultural Management program. She graduated from the University of Alberta in 2019 with a BA in Art and Design. This degree allowed her to explore painting and gain a grounding in writing and literature, which has influenced her practice. She views her paintings as occupying a similar space to poetry, in the immediacy with which they convey emotion.
Megan Klak was a participant in the 2019 RBC Emerging Artists Program at the Nina Haggerty Centre and was a recipient of a 2020 Edmonton Arts Council exploration grant. Her work deals with connection and disconnection, loneliness and the relationship between people and the interior and exterior worlds they build for themselves. Her writing has been published in SNAPline 2020.3 and the Galleries West Magazine.
Top Image: Backyard Isolation (detail), oil on paper, 2020
Courtesy of the Artist