Megan Wilson

Megan Wilson, hostess extraordinaire, opens her Home by by Kate Cohen, San Francisco Examiner, November 24, 2008

Megan Wilson, hostess extraordinaire, opens her Home

Whatever home means to you, you're sure to be thinking of it this week as you sit down at the Thanksgiving table.  To Megan Wilson , home is an art project.  

The internationally celebrated artist has lived at 1256 Leavenworth Street in San Francisco since 1996.  Inexplicably attracted to Indonesian aesthetic and inspired by San Francisco's Flower Power legacy, she began papering her walls with intricate cut-outs from vintage fabrics and assembling knick knacks of sentimental value with family photos into tiny installations all over the apartment.  The result is Home 1996-2008 .

Her intention was always to open the space to the public.  Recently, however, the moment to unveil Home presented itself when Megan became embroiled in a dispute with her landlord, a putrid toad by all accounts.  She must vacate the apartment by mid December.

I arrived at Leavenworth Street on a recent Wednesday night.  Megan, a petite, bespectacled redhead met me at the door.  Her girlfriend, multidisciplinary artist Eliza Barrios , kindly offered me something to drink.  The pair brimmed with good will.  Between swapping travel stories and chatting, we moved from room to room as I marveled at riotous colors and countless layers.  Home is visually arresting.  The eye is drawn many places at once but the effect is careful, thoughtful, and coherent.

Home prompts questions about the intersection of private and public space, safety, comfort, and the real meaning of the word “welcome.”  Megan has opened her world to anyone who passes through the front door by showing the objects and materials that represent her childhood, adulthood, and current state of mind. 

Witnessing this project now, during its short public lifespan, is to be cherished—particularly at a time when people are becoming reacquainted with their own homes as the miserably spiraling economy forces people to skip vacations and dinners out.  Home reminds us that there is always something profound about daily living.

The end of this project is, of course, not the end for Megan. She is traveling with some of her installations and relocating to Manila after the New Year with Eliza.  Home , the lovingly crafted result of one woman's evolution over twelve years is slated for demolition by the end of November, at which point the apartment will most likely be blandly repainted and put back on the market by the landlord.