Hannah Jacoby-Brooks (b.1995) is a southern printmaker and interdisciplinary artist currently based in Boston, MA. Jacoby-Brooks has been confronting their ancestral past as a woman from the American Southeast. Being face to face with her own pride and everlasting shame of their heritage, Jacoby-Brooks has been discussing the taboos and unspoken labor of the Appalachian woman [person]. In May of 2021, she received her BFA in drawing, painting, and printmaking from Ernest G. Welch School of Art & Design at Georgia State University. Currently, Jacoby-Brooks is a second-year MFA candidate at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts University graduating in May of 2023. She most recently attended the IMPACT conference at the Centre for Printmaking in Bristol, UK, as the graduate delegate from her university. Jacoby-Brooks is the mayor and founder of the Graduates in Print (GIP), the only graduate club at SMFA.
By moving to New England, I have been forced to confront my ancestral past as a woman from the American Southeast. Being confronted with both my own pride and my everlasting shame as regards my heritage, I have been discussing the taboos and unspoken labor of the Appalachian woman. Family ephemera I found has forged a mythologized narrative about an object known as the “workin’ dress” which the women in my family adorned as a uniform. The versatility was key to dealing with their ever-changing environments and societal changes in the American Southeast in the early and mid-20th century. In the 21st century, I am tasking myself with creating the uniform of a working artist who carries pride from her home with the heavy guilt of knowing parts of the country look down on others while, in the process, incorporating the functionality and ingenuity of the original garments. By focusing on the steps in creating a garment, I am allowed to analyze all aspects of creation and to decide what is truly necessary and fulfilling to my body in the present. Encapsulating my process in the form of pattern-drafting creates a physical archive to further develop my uniform from, much like the garments I’m referring to. This project is paying homage to my cultural ancestors, accepting their shortcomings, and transforming their utility into an integer in my artistic practice