Summerfair Emerging Artist: Megan Doebrich

Megan Doebrich recently won first place at the the Summerfair Cincinnati Emerging Artists Exhibition.

By Lizzie Kibler | Photography provided by Megan Doebrich | Published March 5, 2018
Megan Doebrich

What is your major?

I graduated in December of 2017 with a BFA in Drawing.

Why do you have an interest in ceramics?

I took the introductory class for ceramics in my final year of college. Being a 2-Dimentionaly focused major, and not having much experience with clay, I was afraid that I might fail when it came to making ceramic pieces. Although I was not too happy with some of my first ceramic pieces, I enjoyed the process of working with clay. It felt freeing to transfer my drafting skills into what I felt was a less constricting medium. I did not have to think about things like foreshortening or implied textures. I was able to make whatever I wanted without thinking much about what I was doing. In addition, after making so many flat drawings, it felt kind of surreal to be able to hold something that I made and to exist in the same space as them.

What was the award you received and how did it affect you as an artist?

The award that I received was the Summerfair Cincinnati Emerging Artists Exhibition first place, which included a purchase award of one of my submitted pieces. Winning an award like this right after graduating has validated my work as an artist and has shown me that I did go into the right field. It has opened up so many new avenues for me as an artist. In addition to being introduced to the heads of Summerfair and getting more involved with their organization, the exhibition has introduced me and my work to many different people who either want to purchases my art or help me to expand and network as an artist.

What are your favorite pieces you've ever created? Could I have a picture of that? 

The three ceramic pieces I created for my Senior BFA Exhibition are my favorite. These pieces were also the ones that I submitted for the Summerfair Cincinnati Emerging Artists Exhibition. All three of them were sculptures of animals in different states of fear or pain. My favorite of the three was a small hare piece, Quick and Efficient. I loved the emotion that I was able to portray in each of these pieces, but it seemed most successful in Quick and Efficient. There is something beautiful about hares, their long ears and strong legs. Seeing one forcibly rendered immobile and curled into itself in fear created what I think is a small, hauntingly beautiful piece.

Quick and Efficient piece Quick and Efficient
Stand Tall piece Stand Tall
Hit the Ground Running piece Hit the Ground Running

Who inspires you most?

My professor JeeEun Lee inspired me the most when it comes to the direction that my work has taken recently. Before taking her class, I was unhappy with where my work was headed and was trying desperately to find something to make me happy with my work. During her class, JeeEun told me that I could make anything, even if that anything were something as silly as fantasy video game animals. JeeEun was able to encourage me to make what I wanted rather than what I thought my professors would want me to make. This led to me creating an ongoing series of works that I am truly happy with. Her words and teachings in the two semesters that I had with her have inspired me to become a better artist, one who is actually able to accept their work as art for the first time.

Anything else you'd like to add about the award and what the future holds for you?

The award has exposed me to other artists who are willing to help me grow as an artist. I have had several offers for purchases as well as requests for commissions. One artist in particular has offered me space in her public studio to display and sell my work. My plan is to grow and expand upon this series of work that has brought me so much success and to make myself and my work known.