AJ Hawkins uses fine art as a research medium to explore the challenges of living in a mortal body. Drawing on her background as a painter, sculptor and custom fabricator, AJ often creates hybrid art works that blur the lines between 2- and 3-dimensional, traditional and experimental.
Her Kickstarter-funded project, The Reclamation, challenges viewers to choose more environmentally-friendly afterlives by highlighting the value of human decomposition and the necrobiome. In years since, AJ's art has focused on experiences surrounding grief and illness. Her new series, The Poisoned Body, explores the physical and psychological toll of living with a prolonged and severe iatrogenic disease.
Her artwork and writing have been published on the websites of the Order of the Good Death, Death & The Maiden, Death/Scent, Unquiet Things, Haute Macabre and Death Salon. Her work has shown at Ghost Gallery in Seattle, WA and Ford Gallery in Portland, OR. In 2020, AJ was a featured storyteller and artist for Storyborne's Heart Stories event, and was invited to discuss her work on death on the Critical Bounds podcast. She has been a vendor at the Death Salon Boston Artist Marketplace, The Creeping Museum Artist Market and the Deathsploration Art & Resource Fair.
When not in her studio, AJ runs KALMA, her death positive brand for the living, full of ethical and eco-friendly goods that honor mortality, celebrate beauty and cultivate curiosity.