The Awakenings Foundation invites you to join us for an opening reception for “Judith Dawn: In Memoriam,” an exhibit commemorating the life, artistry, and death of Judith Dawn Hickey, the cousin of Awakenings founder Jean Cozier. The opening reception will take place at the gallery in the Ravenswood neighborhood of Chicago on Thursday, January 18th from 5:30 - 9:00pm, and the exhibit will remain on the walls until April 1st.
For seven years Awakenings has worked to showcase art made by survivors of sexual violence to a world we didn’t think was listening. The past several months have been a true reckoning for assailants and predators, but once again, they are stealing the spotlight from survivors and their stories. Now, we think the world is listening. In light of Awakenings’ growth and the newfound spotlight on sexual assault, we wanted to present to the world Awakenings’ very first survivor artist: Judith Dawn Hickey. The opening reception for this exhibit will take place at the Awakenings Foundation gallery at 4001 North Ravenswood Avenue, Suite 204-C on Thursday, February 16th from 5:30 - 9:00pm.
Judith Dawn was a natural and self-taught artist, but early childhood sexual abuse left her without internal or external resources to grow. After an agonizing period of healing and recovery, she began watercolor instruction, and her artistic expression exploded. During one year she created over 140 individual canvases. Her work was just beginning to be exhibited in the San Diego/LaJolla area when she contracted colon cancer, which went undiagnosed and caused her death in January of 1998. During her last visit with Jean Cozier, she expressed her desire that Jean find a way for sexual abuse survivors to study and create art.
In light of the discourse surrounding sexual assault in the media, it is more important now than ever to show survivors that we hear, see, and believe them. Sexual assault is not new, and it is not always public. It exists in shadows, in our own families, and behind closed doors. Judith found art later in her life, and the transformation it gave her inspired Jean Cozier to found Awakenings. It is our hope and intention that that this show will encourage our visitors to try and explore healing through the arts.
The Awakenings Foundation is a 501c3 whose mission is to make visible the artistic expression of survivors of sexual violence. We invite you to join us for this event, and to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to stay on top of our exciting programming.