“I wish to reveal the blueprint or soul that lies beneath its physicality, as in the beginning or at the end of the day, observing light either evolving from or dissolving towards nothingness.”
“It is my desire to engage the viewer in a quiet peaceful way, speaking to the less obvious but equally powerful quality of hidden beauty.”
Meg Holgate draws her inspiration from the incredible natural beauty of the Northwest, allowing her work to suggest the energy of the landscape rather than portray its realistic details. The use of simple shapes, strong contrasts, layered application and limited palette gives her work an organic quality that can be both diffuse and sculptural. In her blurred soft tones, she alludes to what is hidden, subtle, to the silence of things yet to be revealed.
Holgate’s love of art began early in her childhood. Reared in New York and London, surrounded by a contemporary kaleidoscope of artistic expression in the 60s and 70s, her work reflects a deep respect for the landscapes of the old masters as well as the influences of Mark Rothko and Henry Moore. She writes: “My joy was to spend afternoons in galleries and museums, or stroll through the public parks to experience the latest 'happenings.' As a little girl, I began a collection of art postcards, which I housed in a shoebox to sort through at my leisure. Mesmerized by the art and architecture in which I immersed myself, a passion to paint was soon fueled." However, she was not encouraged to make a living as an artist, and she graduated college to begin a brief career as a stockbroker.
Several years later, Holgate returned to painting when she began a successful career as a decorative painter that would span over the next 25 years. From New York to Palm Beach, from Sun Valley to Seattle, Holgate was commissioned to paint murals, trompe l’oeil, and copies of major works from Vermeer to Juan Gris. This allowed her to support her children and herself—a then single mother—as she continued to hone her skills. Remarried and with her children now independent adults, Holgate has enjoyed the opportunity to embark on her own work again.
At the core of my work lie the principles of Wabi Sabi: the quintessential Japanese aesthetic, the study of the beauty of things. The values of this aesthetic are elusive and hard to define, but they allow for—even revel in—what is imperfect, irregular, intimate, unpretentious, earthy, murky and simple...Strong organic shapes and landforms provide the framework on which the painting is developed, wherein I can contrast opacity and transparency, stark darkness and diffused luminance...
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Artists Holgate and Becker-Black transcend the limits of landscape and portraiture, Michael Upchurch, The Seattle Times, June 15th, 2012.