Sara Di Donato

Region: Northeast

My work springs from an interest in the metaphoric and poetic possibilities of girlhood activities. Visually, I am fascinated with images from comics, vintage illustration, and advertising, as well as from more traditional art historical sources. I try to create a world of characters, mostly girls and women, caught in states of excitement, epiphany, or self-absorption that momentarily suspend self-consciousness.

Using visual imagery that ranges from Victorian paper dolls to girls' gymnastics and female contortion, my work is about exploring the borders between unselfconsciousness and self awareness, fear and delight, longing and restraint, particularly as they relate to the female psyche.

In the "Dear Diary" series, I took as my launching point the daily practice of journal keeping by Victorian-era young girls. While the faithful recording of family activities was meant as an exercise in self-discipline and orderliness, I became interested in depicting how this theme of virtue and restraint is often subtly subverted by self-discovery.