MEG FRANKLIN: SMALL, SMALL WORLD
Marvin Gardens is pleased to announce the opening of Small, Small World, the New York debut solo exhibition of Brooklyn-based painter Meg Franklin.
Though obviously objects, there’s something eerily curious about the contents of Meg Franklin’s still-lifes. The baubles and doodads that populate her pieces look and feel familiar—you can imagine their weight if held in your hand—but are impossible to place. In Small, Small World, which derives its title from the popular ride in Disney World’s Magic Kingdom full of not-quite lifelike animatronics in matching outfits preaching global harmony, Franklin similarly constrains the spaces and color palettes of her paintings, each a singular voice from a seeming self-contained other world.
By isolating her arrangements and stripping the objects of any strict identifiers, Franklin focuses attention on their fundamental physicality. As you search the velvet backdrops for clues, your eyes are drawn to the textures and forms of the as yet ambiguous assemblages.
While the works maintain an exotic mysticism—disembodied arms reach across the canvas, lit candles and glowing reflective tokens spark some alien ritual—Franklin also includes explicit details from her own personal history. Portholes offer glimpses into vacation spots or dreamt up living rooms; portals into a remembered consciousness unknown to our own.
Identification and recognition play an important role in unpacking these paintings. By posing questions like, “Why is the desire to classify the unknown so strong?” and “How do we accept mystery?”, Franklin forces us to accept that not everything is knowable, including ourselves, and that the journey of observation can be a pleasurable trip, even without a determinable destination.