Q & A with artist Megan Wirth
What are you currently reading, listening to or looking at to fuel your work?
I’m currently reading Man and His Symbols by Carl Jung.
My favorite Pandora stations right now are Casino Versus Japan and Tycho, and I just discovered these really great compilations called Mushroom Jazz. Anything that is ambient-electronic helps me get in the zone when I’m working.
I will forever love the Nickelodeon cartoons I grew up with in the 90s. The art is just so wacky! I revisit those episodes often. I also have been playing some bizarre Sega Saturn games with crazy graphics.
· What are your biggest challenges to creating art and how do you deal with them? How do you navigate the art world?
I have a really hard time finishing pieces and seeing them all the way through. There’s always at least 5 unfinished works lying around my studio, and everyday I just want to start something new. I’m moody, so it’s hard to revisit a piece when my perspective changes so rapidly. I recently started meditating so I can chill out and focus.
Sometimes it’s hard to make the trips to see exhibits in person, and I find that I could easily click around for hours on Instagram and the Internet looking at artists and fashion designers. I love the accessibility of being able to see so many artists’ work at any given moment, but it definitely has its ups and downs. It’s great to have that moment where you’re inspired by an artists work, but it’s important for me personally to intentionally take a step back and re-immerse myself in my own vision and my own work, and not become distracted.
· What mediums do you work with? How would you describe your subject matter?
The majority of my work is mixed media. It’s really hard for me to just paint a canvas and not add materials to it like glitter, wool, pipe cleaners, etc. My favorite thing to do is make stop motion videos. It’s so exciting to build sets and characters and make my little worlds come to life. That’s when I am most creative with materials and have the most fun and sense of complete freedom in my work. My two-dimensional work is usually a character or scene, which later sparks an idea for a larger work for a sculpture or stop motion film.
Visually my work is an escape from reality, and that’s exactly how I feel when I make it. I create a whimsical world I would want to live in, but I still can’t ever fully escape the gritty aspects of life. Either the subject matter or the way the materials are used departs from a perfect fantasy-land. It’s bright and energetic, but messy and awkward.
· When people ask you what you “do”, how do you answer?
I say I’m an artist.
· Describe a childhood memory that has influenced your artwork.
I grew up in Southern California and I have so many great memories of camping on the beach with my friends, roller skating, slip n’ slides in my backyard, and pool parties all year round. I’ve honestly never experienced cold or harsh weather, and I think my work channels a summertime-sunshiny kind of aesthetic. Even if I don’t intentionally mean to, that California vibe always seems to shine through.
· Has there been a shift or change in your life or work that has led to what you’re making now? Do you see your work as autobiographical at all?
My artwork is an absolute extension of my current state of mind. The older I get and the more I learn about myself, the more authentic my art becomes. I don’t think there has been a specific shift or change, but just a general process of figuring out what I really want and love to create.
· What is your personal message to your artwork and how does that connect to a communal and universal message?
Don’t take yourself too seriously! My work is a reminder to have fun and to let shit go.
· Do you intend your work to challenge the viewer?
I think my work challenges the viewer because of the various mediums used and the subject matter taking on other forms in several different contexts.
· Is the creative impulse driven by a personal need to ease pain and/or satiate desire?
I feel like there is no line that divides my life and my artwork and it all kind of blends together. Because of that, I feel a strong need to constantly be creating. If I don’t, I feel completely unbalanced in everything I do.
· What three things never fail to bring you pleasure?
Hiking, collaborating on video art with my boyfriend, and watching the sun rise.
· Whats your motto?
Good things come in time.