Susan's Background

I grew up among abstract expressionism but struggled to find my own voice, abstraction was not my passion. My paintings are based on icon imagery. They contain a central image surrounded by elaborate framing, but in my case, the image would not be a religious subject but perhaps an armadillo or an ape. I try to imbue these images with a sense of soul, a palpable sentience, and compassion.

Sometimes the images are humorous or tender, especially in the mosaic facade which I started after 9/11. I embedded the words "celebrate life, celebrate love" into the work as a way of communing with the grieving, trying to uplift us all.

My 130 page illustrated memoir was also a means of healing. It served to help me understand the damages from a traumatic childhood by translating it into art.

Susan Gardner