The work of Minnesota Korean adoptee artist Megan Rye will be featured in an exhibit entitled Foundling, to open at the Weissman Museum of Art, Minneapolis, on January 16, 2022.
More than 70 families participated in sharing referral photos of themselves or adoptee loved ones, who are adopted from many countries to Minnesota. She collected the photos over some years, and there are now portraits of 100 adoptees in the exhibit, rendered in paint on Target shopping bags.
The exhibit will have a soft opening in January, and there will be events at the museum in spring 2020. Because construction is ongoing at the museum with no solid finish date, and due to possible stricter COVID protocols in the future, and Minnesota weather generally, the events at the museum were delayed, although the exhibit will be opening on time, Rye said.
Rye said she got the idea after having her second child, and realizing she had only a few black and white photos of herself as a baby, while there were thousands of images of her son and daughter, as well as many keepsake objects, not to mention roomfuls of toys, clothes and other objects related to them.
Rye was brought up in the Twin Cities, got her undergraduate degree from Rhode Island School of Design, and her Master’s of Fine Arts from the University of Minnesota. The Weissman exhibit is a kind of a homecoming for her, she said, and she expects to invite in adoptee groups locally, as well as University of Minnesota students to observe and learn from the project.
Megan Rye’s website, featuring this collection and her I Will Follow You Into the Dark exhibit of her paintings of her brother’s photos of his military tour in Iraq, is at: meganrye.com . The Weissman Art Museum is at: wam.umn.edu.