Megan Bent “I Don’t Want to Paint a Silver Lining Around it”


Located inside the worcester art museum

Designed as a partnership between Worcester Art Museum, Seven Hills Foundation, and Open Door Arts,
ODG@WAM is a working studio and gallery that exhibits and celebrates the work of aspiring, emerging and established artists with disabilities, acting as a catalyst for community convening and conversation with the museum and beyond.


Megan Bent: “I Don’t Want to Paint a Silver Lining Around it” 

On view: February 15 – May 15, 2023

Events on May 4th
Sun print workshop: 10:30 – 11:30 am
Opening Reception: 11:30 – 12:30 pm
Click here to register!

From the Artist

In March of 2020, my fear of catching the Coronavirus became palpable. “Don’t worry,” an acquaintance assured me “only the sick and elderly will die.” I am chronically ill and immunocompromised. I Don’t Want To Paint A Silver Lining Around It is my personal reflection of being high risk in the pandemic. It is also my response to the outside world’s demand that disabled people be acceptable losses for personal convenience or for corporate profit.

Through chlorophyll printing, which uses UV light to print photographic images directly onto leaves, I connect disability and nature to undermine stereotypical representations of disability as tragic and reframe it as a valuable part of human diversity.  The chlorophyll printing process (where one print/exposure may take anywhere from 8- 72 hours) relies on flexibility, interdependence with nature, and echos my experience of the disability concept of Crip Time; living in a body/mind that values slowing down, connection, and care over speed and production.

The fact that chlorophyll prints are impermanent, and will continue to decay over time, asks the viewer to confront the interdependence and bodily impermanence we all share.

Two calla lily leaves placed horizontally on a black background. On each leaf, printed in the chlorophyll, is a cascading series of my shadow as I walk.

“Quarantine Day 450 (The Ephemeral Gait of a Crip Walking)”

A heart-shaped hosta leaf on a black background. Printed in the chlorophyll is an empty hospital bed, lit by the natural light of a nearby window.

“Untitled (180,000 Lost And Counting)”

A green oval-shaped hosta leaf on a black background. The leaf is going diagonally across the frame with the leaf stem in the top left. Printed into the chlorophyll is a self-portrait where my eyes and face masks are visible. The rest of my face and hair gradually disappear into the leaf.

“Quarantine Day 280”

A round brown hydrangea leaf on a black background. Printed in the light umber chlorophyll is a self-portrait where half my face is lit by the sun and my head and eyes are tilted upward.

“Quarantine Day 7”

About the Open Door Gallery @WAM

Designed as both a working studio and gallery, Open Door Gallery @ Worcester Art Museum is a one-of-a-kind collaboration that supports the creation of new works and the sharing of artwork with the Greater Worcester arts community and beyond!

As a partnership between Open Door Arts, Seven Hills Foundation, and the Worcester Art Museum, Open Door Gallery @ Worcester Art Museum seeks to expand opportunities for meaningful experiences and connections through the arts for people of all abilities.

Painting with the top half horizontally in shades of oranges and browns, reminiscent of a sunset, and a turquoise lower half. Painted on a pegboard.

“Red Sky in Morning” by Jon Sarkin


The Open Door Gallery @ WAM is located in the Higgins Education Wing of the Worcester Art Museum, at:
55 Salisbury Street
Worcester, MA 01609 Hours:
The gallery is open during regular museum hours,
Wednesday – Sunday: 10 am-4 pm
Third Thursday of every month: 10 am-8 pm


The Open Door Gallery @ WAM is located in the Higgins Education Wing of the Worcester Art Museum. The gallery can be accessed through the Lancaster Street entrance of WAM (currently under renovations) or through the Tuckerman Street entrance.

The gallery is at the end of the first floor of the Higgins Wing. It can also be accessed directly through the Lancaster courtyard, where there is a ramp and switch-operated double doors.

ASL interpreters can be requested for events and exhibit openings. We care about your experience, so please contact for access-related questions.

We are proud to participate in the Card to Culture program, a collaboration between Mass Cultural Council and the Department of Transitional AssistanceMassachusetts Health Connector, and WIC Nutrition Program, by broadening accessibility to cultural programming.

Admissions to our Open Door Galleries and related events is free. EBT, WIC, and ConnectorCare cardholders will receive free admission to any ticketed events. See the full list of participating organizations offering EBTWIC, and ConnectorCare discounts.