Megan Dyck is an artist and educator living and working in Calgary, AB. Originally from Lethbridge, Alberta, she received her MFA from the University of Victoria (2014) and holds a BFA from the Alberta College of Art and Design (2010). Engaging a range of media, Dyck has participated in residencies in Canada, and internationally (Textîlsetur Îslands, Blönduós, Iceland, 2017). In addition to her studio practice, Megan teaches drawing, painting, and design courses at the Alberta University of the Arts and the University of Calgary.
My studio research is concerned with querying the incongruous nature of the human psyche through the act of re-interpreting strangers and people whom I know within phantasmagorical visual contexts. Drawing upon the subconscious perceptual lens of daydreaming, themes of magical realism, and notions of the uncanny: my figurative works are conceived collectively as introspective, playfully quizzical anthropomorphic abstractions, choreographed performed gestures, and multi-iterative pictorial representations of the body. Existential, and at times humorous, the subjects portrayed within my work occupy taciturn, engrossed, dazed, and enamoured psychological zones. Fragmented and self-referential, these characterizations are devoid of coherent settings or explicit narratives: situated in un-bound spaces; amidst hybrid forms, and repeating motifs of a prosaic, frequently arbitrary disposition — as though encountered via dreaming. Here, the figure is depicted as a participant in a series of indistinct, latently familiar gestures: neither mechanical nor sensual. Within this liminal realm, my work explores mental states of reverie and disassociation: probing the mercurial arena of the distracted mind in its tendency to shift between such divergent modes as sardonic rumination and hedonistic obsession.
Within my sculptures this theme of indwelling turbidity is investigated by uniting ornamental and utilitarian qualities in abstract objects: fusing the stable with the fragile, the abject with the sublime, and the familiar with the unknown. Here, physical attributes expressly suggestive of form or function are muddled to create duplicitous objects that exist under the guise of sheer decoration, yet persist in beckoning surreptitiously mundane utilitarian interactions in spite of their inability to perform in any useful way. This absurdist predicament of usefulness vs. uselessness functions allegorically to illustrate contrasting archetypes of the unconscious as suggested by Jungian conceptions of the anima and animus. The re-contextualizing of familiar surfaces and forms possessive of seductive or clinical aspects herein leads to the formation of shifty objects which occupy the dual role of plaything and prop; signalling benignly vacant interactions and extravagant manoeuvres alike.