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Zoe Fitch is a contemporary figurative abstract painter. Fitch accomplished her BFA at The University of Mississippi in 2019 and her MFA at The University of Alabama in 2022. As a Mississippi native, she aspires to tell her personal perspective through her Southern narratives and folklore. Fitch looks to influences in Southern culture including flora, wildlife, quilts, clothes making, cooking and other “female-centric” duties. Inspired by her female relatives, Fitch pays homage to the past while commenting on recurring issues.

I am inspired by folklore and related forms of vernacular storytelling. These seemingly absurd stories often include characters based on real people, as well as spiritual entities and supernatural occurrences. Textiles are used to tell the stories of these characters and hold memory in their fibers. I employ Southern Gothic narratives that criticize racism, sexism, classism, and the fall out of a decaying economy. The tension between the grotesque and the beautiful fascinates me. The paintings become symbols and have the potential to create and inspire new folklore. Symbols are a bridge between the past and future, which makes the present tolerable. The Southern landscape is used to explore feminist concerns and the place of women in society. My work gives homage to regionalism, while displaying the visual agony and ecstasy of growing up in the South.

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