About Susan Mania
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Through the observation of
form, color and growth in the natural world and in the working of my
garden and stewardship of woodlands and stream, dynamic movements are
revealed. All that is present in this word, the cycles of plants, the breaking
down of minerals, animal migrations and the coming and going of the seasons
present a multitude of ordered and ever changing relationships that are the
conceptual ground for my working in the studio.
Gathering materials such as milkweed pods, the woody winged seeds of the tulip poplar, the flying propellers of the the maple seed or the roots of past vegetables are some of the many forms that arise in my work. A witness to the migration of birds or the behavior of the vulture as it rides the wind make visible what at first may not be scene, but is revealed. Bound together all these impressions coalesce in an energetic sensation that tells a story of connection, relationships and movement.
My work is therefore an interpretation of that experience and not a direct rendering or actual description. I seek to present these observations in a new and non-direct way in an effort to reveal what can be called the un-scene. I do it for a love of experiencing the miraculous in the common, to tell the story behind the story, and make the inherent connections with our own human physiology and striving.
In medium I primarily work
with oil painting, collage and fiber. My background in fiber arts and my
love for its rich surface textures are woven into the works narrative.
Individual components of form are re-mixed and newly organized to bring both a
new composition of dynamic movement and to bring forth something new that is
waiting to be revealed. Each textural element vibrates
with its own history; cloth that has been re-purposed serves as a distilled
mark of human willing.
I embrace both love for the craft of art making and the potential for art to convey deeper meaning, mysteries and what lies behind the tangible. Throughout my career I have been inspired by the work of artists such as Magdalena Abakanowicz, Lenore Tawney, and Alberto Burri to name a few. I find inspiration in the decomposition of both the natural and the hand made. My work seeks to explore how the process of building up and breaking down of structures in nature is related to the same processes in craft. It is through the doing of art making that meaning is born out, my work process incorporates collage, layering of materials and painting in an effort to build a dynamic presence in the work.