Meg Prange

Russell, IA

ARTIST'S STATMENT

To those who know Meg Prange as an active outdoor lover, her choice of occupation as an artist who creates hand appliquéd fabric pictures seems uncharacteristically sedentary. To her it is an exciting adventure and a natural expression of who she is.

Meg was raised on a sheep and cattle farm in Illinois by a creative mother who taught her how to really see things and a hard-driving father from whom she learned to appreciate challenging physical work. When not laboring on the farm or in school, Meg and her three siblings spent idyllic hours exploring creeks, ponds, claypits, fields and woods around home. During inclement weather, they retired to the basement to create objects of art with materials and encouragement provided by their mother. It was during this time Meg learned to sew.

She graduated with a degree in biology from Drake University in 1981 and in the spring of 1984 moved to Chariton Iowa to work as an engineering technician for the Soil Conservation Service. She switched careers in 1990, developing methods at Rathbun Fish Hatchery, which revolutionized intensive walleye culture. In 1992, following a major breakthrough in her research, she bought a farm south of Russell to shorten her commute and to realize the longtime dream of enjoying a place of her own in the country.

Meg’s foray back into sewing began in 1994 with the creation of a number of contemporary looking machine pieced wall hangings using traditional geometric designs.

Her fascination with the wonderful patterns, textures, and colors of fabric led her to try her first pictorial hand-sewn wall hanging using the blind stitch her mother had taught her as a child. Having had no formal artistic training, she was surprised and delighted with the results. More pictures followed as she developed her distinctive quirky colorful style, and technique of working on a piece of foam board from the top, very simply with just needle, thread, pins, scissors and fabric.

Since 2000, Meg has been dedicating her work time to sharing her creative experiments. She loves the life. It affords her the freedom to schedule her artistic time around fun activities with her husband, family and friends.