Hephzibah Brown

Senior Spotlight

Marcelina Kukawska, Photographer/Reporter

Hephzibah Brown, known as Martha by most, moved to South Bend when she was thirteen years old. Before moving to the United States, Hephzibah lived in Australia and England. Now, she is a senior at John Adams and a valuable and talented addition to our community. 

Hephzibah is an artist who takes inspiration from her childhood. She is inspired by nostalgic items, such as traditional children’s books and English folk art. Hephzibah explores various mediums, such as sewing and painting on found items, like wood panels and tiles. Over the summer, she made a bedspread that portrays the contrast between sleep as a form of rejuvenation and being bed-ridden. This bedspread was one of her first sewing projects, and she is very proud of it. 

Upon moving to the United States, Hephzibah says that she experienced a bit of culture-shock. Besides the abundance of snow that the Midwest receives, she was surprised by the lack of environmental consciousness in the U.S. As someone who advocates for a green future, Hephzibah was surprised by the “little things” in the U.S., such as plastic bags in grocery stores and the absence of vegetarian food in the area.

Moving between countries has also had an impact on Hephzibah’s art. Experiencing different cultures and having her childhood cut into three pieces inspired her to make artwork that focused on where she lived and what she did when she lived there. 

When developing an idea, Hephzibah considers the emotions and sentiments that she wishes to convey through the art piece. However, when making art, her goal is not only to evoke nostalgia within the viewer, but also to grow as an artist. “Educating myself about different cultural art or folk art is what I want to achieve, even if I don’t get an external response from my art,” she says. 

Hephzibah wants to make the most out of her last year at Adams. This year, she decided to be an officer of JA’s French club, since it is one of her favorite subjects. She also would like to be more involved in French culture. Hephzibah’s favorite part about John Adams is that everyone is provided with many opportunities. “It makes me really happy that, for a lot of students, there is a variety [of classes and extracurriculars] to choose from.”

“Everything unfolds how you want it to if you take opportunities,” is a piece of advice Hephzibah would give anyone who is still trying to find themselves at Adams. She says that the best way to approach high school is to take classes that you are interested in, worry less, and avoid overthinking things. 

Hephzibah wants to attend a university outside of the United States, where she will be able to further explore and focus on her art. “Art is the one thing I’m happy doing,” the young artist says. She hopes that one day, she will find herself in a country with historical significance, doing what makes her the happiest: creating art.