Meg Ojala

Meg Ojala received her BA from the University of Minnesota and her MFA from The School of The Art Institute of Chicago. She recently retired after teaching photography at St. Olaf College for 35 years. Ojala has been closely observing, drawing, and photographing the landscape near her studio in southern Minnesota. She explores perceptions of space, the visual poetry of representation and abstraction, and the ways in which photographs transform the world. She has made photographs for conservation efforts such as This Perennial Land, a book encouraging conservation of the Blue Earth watershed, and an interdisciplinary project with St. Olaf colleagues and students retracing the 1838 expedition route of Joseph N. Nicollet.

Other recent work includes small scale platinum-palladium prints from temple sites near Angkor, Cambodia; and a group of pieces that include multiple images of one kind of object, such as letters and leaves. Visual elements and themes such as line and repetition, the compression of space and time, and a heightened sense of impermanence appear in all of this seemingly disparate work. Ojala is represented by Groveland Gallery in Minneapolis.

She has exhibited in places such as the Flaten Art Museum, St. Olaf College; Groveland Gallery, Minneapolis, MN; Tisch School of Fine Arts, Photography Gallery, New York University; Thomson Gallery, Minneapolis, MN; Parts Gallery, Minneapolis, MN; The Center for Photography at Woodstock, NY; International Center of Photography, NYC, NY; and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, TX.

Ojala is a recipient of the 2005 University of Minnesota/McKnight Foundation Artist Fellowship for Photographers. Other earned grants include Minnesota State Arts Board Artists Assistance Grants, McKnight Photography Fellowships and Faculty Development Grants from St. Olaf College including “Place and Landscape” and “Photographing the Undine Region: Mapmaker Joseph N. Nicollet’s 1838 expedition route through southern Minnesota”.