April 4 – May 9, 2009
Friends of Friends
In her series Friends of Friends, Megan Morman (Saskatoon, SK) cross-stitches portraits of people she’s never met but knows through the stories and art community gossip of her friends. Engaging both conceptually and as crafted objects, the colourful, intricate portraits assert the social status and group membership of both maker and subject.
Megan grew up in a small town in rural Minnesota and moved to Canada in 1997 to study at the University of Saskatchewan. Her university experiences were largely with “activist” art outside the organized contemporary art community: artcars, and costumes for drag queens and radical cheerleaders. In 2003 she received two degrees, in Sociology and Women’s and Gender Studies, focusing on critical theory and community development. Since then she has worked as a freelance designer, writer and thing-doer, as well as a professional volunteer with organizations like the Saskatoon Pride Festival. She is currently the Volunteer Coordinator at AIDS Saskatoon and thinks she has the best day job in the world.
Much of Megans art practice wrestles with questions of belonging and “recognition by one’s peers”: How does a person become an artist, and how do we best perform our roles as art community members? She is particularly interested in cultural communities and the ways that identity and group membership are established through storytelling and gossip.
Interested in practically everything, Megans art reflects (and focuses and magnifies) a nerdy, awkward enthusiasm. Her volunteer work and background in critical studies inform a fascination with labour/object production as they relate to conceptual art. In the ongoing performance project LadyLady Helping Services Megan offers her good intentions and “help” to artists (whether they ask for it or not). Other art interests include typography, social history, pixelization, queerness, and mass culture fandom. She is obsessed with plastic canvas needlepoint, and is especially fond of art she can make while watching late-night reruns of Star Trek: Voyager.
Megan has performed with AKA Gallery (Saskatoon) and SAVAC (Toronto), and shown at Calgarys Artcity Festival. She received a grant from the Saskatchewan Arts Board in 2007, and in 2008 was awarded the Saskatchewan Foundation for the Arts’ Jane Turnbull Evans Endowment Fund for emerging women artists. Find Megan online at http://www.populust.ca/ladylady