Lisa Hoke (b. 1952) titled this single over-the-top installation in the Brooks rotunda Pie in the Sky - reflecting both her aspirations for the work, as well as her fears of expecting too much. The dazzling complex abstraction is constructed of recycled and repurposed materials.
"Our constant exposure to packaging, color and 'look at me, buy me' messages gives us a sense of shared experience," notes Hoke. "People will recognize their lives in this exhibit. Nobody will walk in here and not see something that's familiar to them."
Hoke made sketches for Pie in the Sky after a visit to the Brooks, and then created hundreds of small collages. These were joined together in the museum's rotunda, where they took on a life of their own. Hoke describes her working method as:
My own high-wire act without a net. It starts in the quiet of my studio, elements are collages, hybrids of the past and present and a new relationship develops, on site they change once again. I can only anticipate the whole and the excitement as these forms take to the air. My father walked away from being a navy test pilot when he could no longer fly alone. I must have inherited the desire to know by experience, flying by the seat of my pants. It makes every art experience unique for me.
Hoke’s work invites the viewer to not just to drink in the brilliant hues and undulating forms, but to question the underlying appeal of the original objects, and their life as part of an art object.
After graduating with a B.A. in literature, Hoke enrolled at Virginia Commonwealth University, earning a B.F.A. Later she was awarded an Edwin Austin Abbey Fellowship and a Joan Mitchell Foundation grant. Her work, which has been featured in over 20 one-person exhibitions and numerous group shows, can be found in museum collections throughout the United States. Hoke lives and works in New York City.
Lisa Hoke, American, b. 1952, Pie in the Sky, 2017, Cardboard packaging, glue and hardware, Commissioned by Memphis Brooks Museum of Art.