06 Jan Meyer Najem Showcase: Megan Hutchins’ “My Journey”
Megan Hutchins’ wood and galvanized nail creations are not only unique, but unexpected, “A lot of people assume when I go to shows that [my work] was [done by] a male artist. It’s fun to put on a skirt and eyelashes, put on a show and [have people say], ‘Oh shit, you’re the artist?’”
Although Megan has been creating art in a variety of forms for quite some time, her galvanized nail and wood pieces are a recent addition to her arsenal. “I’m an artist at heart. I do all kinds of mediums but finding one that no one has done before…it’s pretty special.” Megan creates each piece from the ground up – literally. She married into a lumberjack family in upstate New York. Her husband’s uncle is a logger, so he lets her select what raw timber she wants, and he moves it to a cutting area for her with massive machinery. After 15 mins of “training” on a bandsaw, Megan cuts all of her live edge wood herself. “The live edge makes it completely unique because nothing else will be like it, no matter what.” She hauls it home, dries it out over the summer in her garage, then creates.
“I think about the finished product before I even [begin anything] – before I design, render, cut boards, print and stencil, drill, sand, stain, seal, glue, and nail.” Megan has learned a lot along the way. Each time she creates, she learns a new lesson to help refine her creative process. Nail selection for her works is surprisingly time consuming, as they all have a different sheen. She will find herself sitting on the floor at Lowe’s going through box after box, finding the perfect combination to ensure her work will be beautiful. Additionally, taking into consideration the glue stain, knot location, and wood types, are all part of the creative process.
One of the key elements of Megan’s work is its permanence. “As an artist, you have to wrestle with the question of is my time worth money or it is worth making art.” Having such a permanent art form, one that can’t be painted over or taken apart and reused, creates challenging choices for the artist. As Megan continues this journey of creation, she is looking to showcase feminine emotions, pushing them into her masculine medium and letting them speak for themselves. “I know my medium and a lot of people assume when I go to shows that it was a male artist. The stigma is going to the wayside and I’m helping prove that.”
Megan Hutchins’s exhibit, “My Journey” is on exhibit at Meyer Najem on the 2nd floor from January 4, 2022 through March 29, 2022. The gallery is free and open to the public Monday-Friday from 8:30am to 5:30pm. Artwork can be purchased by contacting Nickel Plate Arts or ordering on your phone with the QR codes at the gallery. Meet Megan in-person at her reception on March24, 2022 from 5pm-8pm on the 2nd floor of Meyer Najem.