Sarah Hemm

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The Sewing Studio (Snapshot), 2012 Photography, Hand Embroidery 8" X 10" © All Rights Reserved
The Puppetmaster (Snapshot), 2012 Photography, Hand Embroidery 8" X 10" © All Rights Reserved
Perfect Angel (Snapshot), 2012 Photography, Hand Embroidery 8" X 10" © All Rights Reserved
Breakfast (Snapshot), 2012 Photography, Hand Embroidery 8" X 10" © All Rights Reserved
Comfort (Snapshot), 2012 Photography, Hand Embroidery 8" X 10" © All Rights Reserved
Twin Caves (Sanctuary), 2012 Hand Embroidery 14" Hoop © All Rights Reserved
Twin Caves (Santuary) - detail, 2012 Hand Embroidery © All Rights Reserved
Quick Facts
Birth year
University of Wisconsin - Green Bay
Representing galleries
Hatch Art House, The Waxwing
Embroidery, textiles, fiber, mixed-media, photography, conceptual

It comes the very moment you wake up each morning. All your wishes and hopes for the day rush at you like wild animals. And the first job each morning consists simply of shoveling them all back; listening to that other voice, taking that other point of view, letting that other, larger, stronger, quieter life come flowing in.
— C.S. Lewis

This work is about dismantling stereotypes surrounding the terms 'artist' and 'mother' and questioning what it means to be both. I use embroidery to highlight the honesty of mothers who struggle to find balance in their lives -- raising issues of identity, domesticity, and societal expectations.    

Embroidery connects me with mothers/makers of the past who have passed down their knowledge of stitching and stories of motherhood. My method depends heavily on my drawing skills, as the work is stitched freehand. My process is highly intuitive and unabashedly feminine – relying on my intuition, subconscious, and emotions to discern the content of the piece, and to guide my hand.


These are everyday, real situations – photos of friends and family, strangers, still lifes, and sometimes myself.  I take snapshots, slightly edit the photos and print them on 8" x 10" card stock. Hand-embroidering the surface highlights truisms and contradictions often occurring in the daily lives of moms.

Tiny Thoughts

These are not my normal feelings about being a mom. This is what I think about when I'm frustrated, burnt out, or overwhelmed. These are the real words from my personal journal that are not talked about to others – not even my husband. These feelings are held in, covered up, and masked in daily life yet always affecting me.


These pieces describe imagined places of escape and solitude. Mothers can feel a loss of their identity, at times, when we have no choice but to put the needs of our family before our own needs, ambitions, and desires. Personally, I've had to sacrifice part of my identity in order be a good mom. When feeling trapped in my domestic role, I daydream of visiting these idealistic and ethereal destinations. These are places where I can entirely be free.

For more about myself and my work, visit my website at <a href="" rel="nofollow"></a> or email me at