Meg Hahn '17

MECA has definitely helped shape how I am as an artist and has increased my passion for learning and making art.

Describe a body of work that you are currently working on. Overall my studio practice is focused on formalist abstraction; exploring the relationships between color, material, and shape. Currently I have been working on ways to create space through these elements with drawing materials like charcoal, graphite, and pastels, but also fabric and other relatively flat materials in addition to oil paint. I make a lot of drawings throughout my process as a way to generate ideas and test things out. I rely on my intuition and the principles of composition to work with the unexpected discoveries that inherently lie in the process of painting. Through utilizing a range of materials, I am able to maintain the integrity of my hand and create a variety of mark making. As a personal goal, I am working towards developing a personal language of abstraction through color and shape, bridging together drawing and painting.

What made you chose to go into your current field of art? I’ve been interested in art for a very long time, but was unsure about exactly what I wanted to focus on. When I was introduced to painting, I really fell in love with the process and act itself. I realized this department was a good fit for me because I was interested in the history of the discipline as much as the practice. I wanted to learn about painting’s vast history and the theories we discuss in our practices. Painting is really open ended and diverse in terms of what one can do, beyond the traditional rectangular canvas frame.

How has your education at MECA shaped you as an artist? MECA has definitely helped shape how I am as an artist and has increased my passion for learning and making art. I have learned about art through multiple disciplines and how to develop my own interests, figuring out why and how to execute these ideas. I have also learned that while art does require a lot of making, it is also important to research and read along the way. I always have books in my studio that I look through to figure ideas out. MECA has fueled my interest in learning about art on my own terms and outside of class.

What inspires you? I am heavily inspired by the formal qualities of the objects and scenes I encounter, as I am always observing my surroundings, noticing color and line. Lately I have been really influenced by the artificial, in terms of its unnatural and typically hyper saturated color and strange form. I enjoy reading and looking at other artists and ideas as well which provides me with more to consider.

What do you hope to do after graduation? After graduation I would ideally like to maintain a personal studio practice, but also work at some sort of art institution like a gallery. What attracts me to the wide spectrum of art spaces is being able to learn and work with people in a variety of art backgrounds who are all extremely passionate about this complex and intriguing, always moving world. Having a studio background and an active practice would help inform the demands of both fields. I am openminded and flexible about where I will end up, as I would also definitely like to attend graduate school at some point.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received? My very first semester I remember being told that essentially, you get out what you put in. Although this is not uncommon advice, it really motivated me to step out of my comfort zone if I wanted to move forward. I still hear this in my classes now, and how it’s healthy and important to try new things and feel a bit odd. Once you try things out, you begin to become aware of many great opportunities. The faculty here are really valuable resources and have helped me tremendously.