Get it together
October 19, 2018 – November 17, 2018
Get it together is a body of work by Meggan Winsley about survival, and of wearing masks so that we may endure. Winsley is drawn to the use of masks, and by extension, the possible alternate identities that one can wear.
Winsley began using gas masks as a chosen imagery, followed by Plague masque imagery and traditional Hallowe’en costume masks. This has now developed into animal heads. This signifies both therianthropy (ability to metamorphose into other animals and other identities) and also delusion and confusion in regards to self-identity and persona. Utilizing imagery of animal heads has also come to reflect feelings of estrangement, otherness and not belonging.
The environments in which the figures exist in Get it together are abandoned and derelict. The spaces have been neglected, deserted and castoff; yet there remains genuine beauty in the remnants’ decayed elegance. It links us to a time of quality, beauty and at least the illusion of goodness – yet the disarray suggests that perhaps that time has long passed. The creatures inhabit the space and are full of strength, determination and good ole fashioned fabulousness. Tension is evoked in the viewer, wondering if it is defiance or denial on the faces that look back at them.
Screenprinting allows WInsley to take a photographic image, break it down and reassemble it with the halftone being the aesthetic evidence of this action. The medium forces Winsley to challenge herself and develop as an artist, as she pushes the number of layers she can successfully print. She is drawn to the precision and control that is necessary to print many layers with exact registration.
Get it together is about personal survival, putting on a good face and finding beauty in the chaos of change.
Meggan Winsley is based in Toronto, Ontario. She received her BFA from York University in 2004 and the Art Fundamentals Certificate course from Sheridan College in 1999. She became a member of Open Studio in 2005 and began teaching shorty after. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally and held in both public and private collections. She is currently teaching screenprinting courses at Open Studio.