Megan Bettencourt

Art + Design: Painting

Megan Bettencourt portrait

Biography

Megan Bettencourt was born and raised in the small town of Westport, Massachusetts. She graduated from Westport High School in 2015 with a focus in studio art and is currently a BFA candidate at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth in Painting. She is an interdisciplinary artist combining painting, drawing, and collage to create emotion evoking pieces. A majority of Megan’s work has consisted of the figure, recently integrating the use of photography and collage to be able to address life’s stressors and family stressors.

While being a BFA candidate, Megan is simultaneously receiving her BA in Crime and Justice Studies. She is very passionate about social justice reform, criminal justice reform, and prison reform. In the future, Megan hopes to use the knowledge obtained by both degrees to create social justice art pertaining to present events.

Statement

This series of works was inspired by my family member’s recent medical events and the hardships associated with them. Until recently, there was a great separation between my life and my creative work, my heart was elsewhere. Cancer, heart issues, and a stroke had taken over life as I knew it. In a family, you tend to feed off the emotions of members directly affected; anger, sadness, anxiety, emptiness, lost, or disconnection, while often trying to stay buoyant. My work focuses on the concepts of memory, generational progression, personal history, and age. By using old family photos, I address that while we are getting older, our grandparents and parents are getting older as well. There are many things younger generations do not know about older generations. We do not know many places they have gone, the stories they have, how their ideals have changed, or what they have truly gone through. We get glimpses and pieces of it while growing up, but until we ask or are “old enough”, we never get the full story.

Through the subtle integration of drawing and painting on top of washed-out photos, these works mimic the fleeting glimpse of family memories. My first piece was created during the time of shock and worry about what would happen to my best Bampa. Would we still have our cherished breakfast dates after my 8am class or go to the racetrack? I want to document and reveal our relationship’s evolution from when I was 5 years old to 21 years old. In my second piece, I focus on capturing more of the turmoil my Bampa and my Nana were going through. I want to learn more about their history, before grandchildren, children, and marriage. The third piece consists of multiple sketchbook drawings from different moments leading up to and after the cancer surgery. This series of work represents an attempt to feel as though I have control over painful events occurring in my life. In the end, one thing remains to reign true, stated by Dr. Seuss, “sometimes you will never know the true value of a moment until it becomes a memory”.

Contact

Email: megankbettencourt@gmail.com
Instagram: @mbettsart
@mbettsart 

Slideshow

  1. Bampa and Sweetie, 2020, oil pastel and mixed media on canvas, 28 ½” X 29 ¾”
  2. Bampa and Sweetie (detail), 2020, oil pastel and mixed media on canvas, 28 ½” X 29 ¾”
  3. Bampa and Sweetie (detail), 2020, oil pastel and mixed media on canvas, 28 ½” X 29 ¾”
  4. Bampa and Nana, 2020, oil pastel and mixed media on canvas, 27” X 41”
  5. Bampa and Nana (detail), 2020, oil pastel and mixed media on canvas, 27” X 41”
  6. Bampa and Nana (detail), 2020, oil pastel and mixed media on canvas, 27” X 41”
  7. Family Waiting, 2020, ballpoint pen and pencil on paper, 6 ½” X 9”
  8. IV Lines, 2020, ballpoint pen and pencil on paper, 6” X 9”
  9. Central Lines, 2020, ballpoint pen and pencil on paper, 9” X 12”
  10. Hospital Bed, 2020, ballpoint pen and pencil on paper, 9” X 12”
  11. Window Washer, 2020, ballpoint pen and pencil on paper, 9” X 12”
  12. BWH Sign, 2020, ballpoint pen and pencil on paper, 9” X 12”


Departments College of Visual Performing Arts, Date: Year 2020, Degree Type BFA, Gallery Campus Gallery, Gallery Exhibitions