A posthumous show at the Aspen Art Museum celebrates an artistic talent cut tragically short.
When artist Margaret Kilgallen died in 2001 at the age of 33, she was on the cusp of personal and professional greatness. She had recently completed her MFA at Stanford and had been chosen for a featured installation at New York’s Whitney Museum of American Art. She and her husband, artist Barry McGee, were new parents to baby daughter Asha.
But cancer took Kilgallen without giving her a chance to realize all of that potential. First diagnosed with breast cancer in 1999, the artist kept her illness private. When the disease metastasized during her pregnancy, she focused only on her child. According to Stanford professor Enrique Chagoya, for whom Kilgallen was a teaching assistant during her last year of life, she was gone before friends even knew she was ill.