April 15, 2024

Senior Spotlight: Lizzie Hill

In just a few short weeks, our three seniors' final artwork will be up in our gallery for our Senior Thesis Exhibition. Assistant Professor of English Dr. Bailey Moorhead sat down with each of them to get to know their work and creative process a little bit better. First up-

Lizzie Hill


From Elizabeth, Indiana (rural town)

BM: How would you describe your art subject in a nutshell?

LH: I make experiential installation pieces that immerse the viewer as part of the work. I’m interested in creating environments that encourage people to think about their place within them— as individuals becoming part of communities. I’m interested in social connections, and I use environmental imagery to bring attention to people’s roots: the idea of being grounded in both humanity and nature.

I consider myself an observer, so part of my process is thinking of myself as this little figure that sort of goes unnoticed but is watching and creating based on my observations of others. I have a persona in my art that I use to represent those feelings: a little rat. The rat persona is a big part of myself within my work, almost like a signature, but it’s also a fun, comical, approachable way for my audience to engage with my work. Art doesn’t just have to be too serious!


BM: What are your main medium(s)/materials?

LH: I use a lot of accessible materials from my home, including repurposed materials, textiles, natural materials, plants, and items associated with comfort, home, and memories. I focus on tactile/textural memories of mundane things.


BM: What inspires you? Why is this subject important to you?

LH: I think of visual art and sensory experiences as essential human experiences. I’m trying to hone in on how we interpret the world. So, I focus on how people interact and try to create positive spaces as a response to the anxiety and stressors of modern life. I hope people will take a moment to relax and breathe when they enter these spaces, and that they can find comfort there.


BM: Who do you see as your audience? What do you hope they take away from your work?

LH: I grew up in a really rural area, so I was mostly surrounded by my family. But we don’t often slow down enough for moments of quiet or peace. Seeing environmental elements indoors, like dirt or roots or grass in a gallery space is unusual, so I want to use those unexpected natural elements to disrupt audiences from all walks of life. I hope they want to slow down and enjoy that positive space.


BM: What kind of research has informed your work?

LH: I’m really interested in artists who use ephemeral materials and mirror the ephemeral nature of human existence as part of nature. I’m also inspired by affect theory and phenomenology. I just want to think more about how people exist within space and interact with it.


BM: What are you most proud of in your work?

LH: I can actually talk about my work now! I’m an introvert, so I’m proud of getting better at connecting to other people through my work. KyCAD has really helped me come out of my shell.


BM: How has your art developed since you came to KyCAD?

LH: My art has definitely changed. When I first started out, I was used to drawing at the scale of a couple inches. I never thought I’d be working with such big installations! Working on this massive scale has been difficult, but it’s so exciting to compare and see how far I’ve come. KyCAD has really pushed me to be the person I am. There’s a sense that “I belong here.”

Dr. Bailey Moorhead
Assistant Professor of English