Zoe Hawk

Region: Midwest

Website: http://www.zoehawk.com

City / State: Columbia, MO

My work delves into the world of adolescence, depicting groups of girls within carefully constructed scenes: at school, in the home, or out in nature. It tackles themes of gendered socialization, anxiety, group dynamics, and performance within scenes of girlhood play and interaction that often stylistically reference children’s storybook illustrations. The narratives depicted are meant to be sweet and somewhat familiar to the viewer, yet on closer inspection take a mysterious or unsettling turn. Sometimes conveying innocence and curiosity, at other times confronting violence and fear, my work investigates the complex experience of coming of age. The costumes, colorful dresses, mournful funeral attire, and identical uniforms signify various modes of feminine identity, and set the stage for the girls’ interactions. A play of yearning, contention, camaraderie, and mischief develops between these characters as they navigate their own little worlds—somewhere between childhood and adulthood, between fairy tales and the dark realities of womanhood.