Meredith Ojala is a multi-media artist and activist from Seattle. Her artwork often delves into the emotional landscapes of environmental and social-justice issues. She worked on environmental campaigns while studying sociology and studio art at Princeton University. She is currently splitting time between Seattle and the Arctic of Sweden.
"All I See is Red" oil on canvas, 18in x 24in, 2018
After being evacuated from the Erskine fire in 2016, I moved back to the Pacific Northwest hoping the heavier precipitation would ease the wildfire risk. After managing a meditation retreat in Southern Idaho 2018, I had great difficulty driving back to Seattle through all the wildfires in Eastern Oregon and Washington. This painting is part of a set of paintings made at a time when wildfires felt all-encompassing, when the world felt like it was on fire, and my dreams were turning red.These paintings are about sleeping with fire and how wildfires spread into our dreams and subconsciously color our perception of the world. They take us into feelings of falling asleep with wildfire in clear view from our home window; to feelings of being woken up by water-bombers. Wildfires are one of the most beautiful and simultaneously terrifying landscapes I have ever seen. They have taken over many of paintings even when I had no plans to incorporate them.
more from Meredith's perspective
This image was taken near Meredith’s old studio, which was situated on traditional Nehelam, Clatsop, and Chinook territory.
Inspiring autumn landscape on traditional sdukʷalbixʷ (Snoqualmie) territory.
Meredith’s studio in Haida Gwaii. A collection of political and wildfire landscapes-in-progress fill the space.