Graduate Profile

Megan Dickinson - Applied Arts

Megan Dickinson - Applied Arts

Director & Curator at MD Gallery

“Twenty years ago I had the idea to open a gallery but I put it aside until now. I opened the MD Gallery in downtown Whangarei mid-2017, and for me it’s all about curating. I’ve been curating since I was a child. I worked as a florist and taught floristry for 15 years but I wanted to curate art. Deciding to do my degree in applied arts was a real turning point for me.

“Committing to that study gave me the opportunity to contemplate things that mattered to me and gave me the confidence to rediscover what I was good at. The tutors were practising artists themselves with solid reputations and they were beyond dedicated in sharing their wealth of knowledge and experience. When I finished the degree in 2014 I went into recovery mode for a while then I entered the Corban’s Art Awards and won second place in the sculpture section. That re-awoke my creativity.

“At around that time I started work at The Shutter Room as a curator and was there for a couple of years. I exhibited some of my own photograms (photos made without a camera) and installations there. The transition from The Shutter Room to running my own gallery was prompted by turning 50. It was an ‘if not now…when’ moment so I started looking for premises and found this high-foot-traffic site in Rust Ave. Over 2 years on and I am still loving it."

“I curate both group and solo shows here, mostly for Whangarei artists, ranging from emerging to established. There’s been a gap in Whangarei for a fine art gallery space and I’m now providing that space. I’m into making connections between the viewer and artist, and showing viewers how to hang a mix of photographs, paintings and prints together.

"Looking forward now, I aim to build my client base locally, nationally and internationally."