Immersive and hypnotising, Meagan Streader’s light works bring ordinary, everyday spaces to life. Meagan’s installations and sculptures have been seen at festivals and exhibitions throughout Australia, including Dark Mofo in Tasmania and Arts House, Melbourne, each one exploring the limits of spatial perception, colour, reflection, and optical art.
In 2016 Meagan was supported by a Cultural Trust grant to undertake a three-month structured residency at the NARS Foundation, USA. At the early stages of her artistic career, this opportunity gave Meagan access to pioneering artists in the space and light movement and dedicated studio space in which to experiment with large-scale ideas. This time confirmed for Meagan the direction in which she wanted to take her practice and continues to shape her work.
“During the residency, my concentration shifted from ideas connected to the ‘transformation of space’ to a more considered approach to light components and materials, and how these materials responded to surrounding architecture and viewers present. My research and artmaking were heavily influenced by a lot of work I saw in NYC during the residency period.”
Perhaps one of the most interesting shifts in perspective for Meagan was the realisation and pride that the quality of contemporary Australian art met international art standards on equal terms.
“In a lot of ways, it still feels like Australian artists are left behind – set afar from the bustling cultural capitals and countries of the world, [so] the recognition for some of the amazing artists and works coming out of Australia is not comparable to those, for example, from America.”
Placing her work in an international context gave Meagan the confidence that her concepts and practice are at a standard acceptable to an international audience.