Zoe Hawk, Cry Sally Cry, 2014, oil on aluminum

Zoe Hawk couldn’t make it to the opening of her DVAC show The Secrets We Keep from her current teaching gig in Doha, Qatar, but her small oil on aluminum paintings and prints caused a nice stir opening night and we had a great time chatting with her via skype at the gallery talk on Saturday.

Zoe’s imagery of girlhood and coming-of-age experiences reference 1950s and 60s children’s storybook illustration and advertisements. Meant to be sweet and somewhat familiar to the viewer, upon closer inspection they take a slightly mysterious or unsettling turn. She’s cited literary influences like The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood, The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman and the writings of bell hooks and Judith Butler.

She also looks to English-born Mexican surrealist painter artist Leonora Carrington (1917-2011) and Cindy Sherman (Born 1954) American photographer and film director, best known for her conceptual portraits, for inspiration. 

Zoe Hawk was born in St. Louis, MO and currently lives in Doha, Qatar. She received her MFA from the University of Iowa and BFA from Missouri State. The Secrets We Keep: New Works by Zoe Hawk, Ashley Jonas and Stephanie McGuinness will be on view at DVAC through Feb 24, 2017. Read more about Zoe here and here.