meagan donegan

August 10, 2011

Meagan in her studio surrounded by recent works

I admit, my first unconscious reaction when I saw Meagan Donegan‘s work was, “Sheep! Oh I love sheep!” But then almost as quickly a deeper part of my psyche couldn’t help but notice that Meagan’s art was so much more than cute little lambs and rams. In fact, no matter what manner of creature is depicted, all of Meagan’s work is immediately evocative, and ultimately, quite powerful.

Meagan describes her art is an exploration of the relationships and connections between herself and others, as well as the world around her. As such the beasts in Meagan’s pieces have a truly totemic quality. First of all they are beautifully rendered, almost reverentially. Yes, some are cute, life-giving, farm animals (perhaps in reference to the idyllic projections and innocent potential of all new relations). But they are also haunting. Some of Meagan’s creatures stand quite alone in the void, as yet ungrounded by feet or a body. Others seem part of a herd, and yet separated they fade and blur like spirits of relationships past, present and future, in and out of reality or the collected consciousness. Some of them stare right at you, knowingly, their impact clear. While others have become obscured by time, their associations hazy. Or perhaps these totems mirror our own journey. Marked by paint and/or stains, these originally untested creatures have now been tainted, but also made wiser, by their path through the world. As a result they are much more soulful than one may have originally realized.

“herd of sheep” – oil on canvas, 4′ x 5′

“blue cow” – pencil, coffee and pigment on paper, 24″ x 34″

“herd in grey scale” – oil on canvas, 3.5′ x 4.5′

untitled – graphite and coffee on paper, 42″ x 38″

“beard of bee” – pencil and coffee on paper, 24″ x 34″ “sheep” – oil on canvas, 24″ x 30″

Prints of many of Meagan’s originals are available on her Etsy site.

All photos copyright Meagan Donegan. Used with permission of the artist.

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