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Margaret Meehan: Certainty Short-Circuted
by Charissa N. Terranova


Whether full-blown installations or succinct sculptures, Margaret Meehan’s works embrace a unique sense of narrative. In a retroactive turn of media, applying filmic concerns to the sculptural, they seem like stills taken from longer stories. Meehan’s installation Innocence and Otherness (featured in “Pretty Baby,” a 2007 Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth exhibition examining the uncanny within adolescence) brought together small sculptural busts and drawings in an implied landscape. Painted directly on the wall, craggy outcroppings of a Minimalist white mountain popped forth from an opaque gray background, creating an odd syncopation with the pink and white stripes on adjacent walls. The installation seemed something like a vignette from a lonely ice cream parlor in the Alps where feral half-human, half-animal children sat in anticipation. The ruddy head of Anabella, a small ceramic and faux-fur bust of one such child, was mounted cleanly against the wall. Half-smiling, bleary-eyed, and with a hirsute face like Wolfman Jack, Anabella remained unfazed by the small clutch of pink birdies atop her head and the shiny pink stream of feces-like paint running down the center of her face.

Benevolent Blackness, 2009.
Mixed media, 75 x 79 x 22 in.

Photo: Courtesy the artist

 


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