1xRun Thru Interview
Fortune Favors The Bold by Meggs
1xRun: Tell us a little about this piece, when was it made & with what materials?
Meggs: This piece was created in March 2013, the original was 46×46” canvas painted with acrylics & aerosol. It was based off of another piece I did, which was a reference to a Nirvana song ‘Frances Farmer will have her revenge on Seattle’. Frances Farmer – the 1930-40’s Hollywood actress who struggled with alcoholism and was eventually admitted to a mental hospital. She was somewhat of a victim of Hollywood stardom lifestyle which was a reference to the show being in Culver City LA and to my recent move here. The piece depicts the femme fatal in her classic passive ‘headshot’ pose, but as somewhat of a gypsy, juxtaposed against a skull and crystal ball to represent uncertainty and the duality of “fortune”.
1xRun: Tell us how the idea and execution came about?
Meggs: As I mentioned above the idea sprang from the Nirvana song and the piece that followed it so it’s basically a more in-depth exploration of that piece. An exploration of a high-risk creative lifestyle and that fame and fortune can be fleeting.
1xRun: How long did the piece take?
Meggs: I’d say approx. 2 weeks in the making.
1xRun: What is unique about this piece?
Meggs: I haven’t done a lot of female portraits in this ‘hollywood starlet’ style so this piece is unique in that sense as well as being one of the first pieces to use the skull sliced through into two colour treatments, to further emphasis duality and the ‘knifes edge’ of a creative lifestyle, so to speak.
1xRun: Why should people buy this print?
Meggs: I hate this question – right now because the proceeds will be very beneficial to me setting up my new Los Angeles studio! There’s so much I couldn’t bring with me it hurts, ha.
1xRun: Describe the piece in one gut reaction word.
1xRun: You’ve had 2 killer shows on the west coast this year with Thinkspace and White Walls, we’ve seen some new sculptural pieces emerge too, can you bring us up to speed on these show and the ideas / execution?
Meggs: Thanks. Yeah both shows were somewhat different in that ‘Heavenly Creatures’ @ Thinkspace was a continuation of the mythology & fantasy themes that I’d been working with throughout 2012. It was more of a serious, involved show for me and a progression on the painting style I’m further developing.
This show definitely had more of an interactive installation element too – which I guess counts as sculptural elements. I’d be thinking of doing something more interactive, which involves people in the creation/process of work, which I feel is a large part of street/public art, so the idea of the spinning ‘thaumatropes’ came about as an extention of the circular and duality face mask pieces I’d been painting.
Whereas ‘Arch Angels’ @ Whitewalls was somewhat still a reference to this but more of specific ‘concept show’, like a concept album, ha. It was more specifically about being/working in the United States and the personal and social issues that I was experiencing in the transition. For me it was more about having a good time in the process, collaborative painting and referencing specific favourite comic elements.
1xRun: You’re currently staying in Venice Beach – break it down for us – what are the thoughts behind living and working in LA, how is the space and what is it like kicking it near the beach every day?
Meggs: So far I’m still in the process of adjustment and setting myself up here so its hard to comment too much on ‘working in LA’. The studio space I currently have though is sweet, its called Chalk and is now a shared studio with friends/artists DJ & Paul of CanLove and other designer and tattoo artist crew. Being near the beach isn’t a bad thing for sure, I’ve just started riding or jogging down in the mornings for a swim. Hope to keep that up as long as possible!
1xRun: We’re looking at a show in Detroit coming up in the fall of 2014 – what are your current preconceptions of Detroit having never been here yet, what can people expect from you at the show? what are you looking to the most when you’re here?
Meggs: I guess my current preconceptions of Detroit are that it is now a city with a lot of potential for creative culture to flourish and grow from the ashes of failed industrialization. It seems its already happening in a solid push with what you guys are doing and the murals out there. So yeah I’m excited for urban exploration and the potential to paint some really cool murals and installations in awesome decayed urban settings. I love the history and story you can see in old buildings and the feeling of solitude that you find exploring abandoned places.
As far as the show, I’m beginning to explore using photography more in conjunction with my paintings and doing more portrait based pieces and more abstraction. So from here I’m into exploring and trying to find my balance between these things. Definitely pushing colour and abstraction further, especially on a large scale.
1xRun: Aside from the two recent shows, what else have you been up to?
Meggs: I’ve been busy sorting my (potential) relocation to California, setting things up here and working on canvas pieces for group shows and commissions.