A kaleidoscopic array of creatures and nature: Iguanas, fish, egrets, trees, sky, clouds, and mountains.... and geometric symbols: squares, circles and lines of all shapes - are among the elements that inhabit Sushe's paintings. They swirl through her work as she explores the mysteries of life and nature and synthesizes them into brilliant areas of multi-layered color, using paint, collage and other media to bring them to life and put them into motion.
Sushe is both a painter and sculptor. Influenced by American Abstract painters from the 1930's and 40's, particularly the work of the Transcendental Painting Group in Santa Fe, her work reflects the landscape and the movements of nature.
Although my work is very abstract, she notes, "I think of it as being symbolic of the natural world because I strive to create an orderly composition of both geometric and organic form in each piece."
She works with acrylics and likes to add different types of texture with hand-painted papers, plus foils to attract light and add visual interest. "Movement, " Sushe says," is achieved by repeating forms and shapes, and varying the directions of lines. In essence," she continued, "I am striving to find new and different ways in which to depict the natural rhythms of life and nature." She further explained, "Ultimately, each painting becomes a unique experience and creates an image, which I feel is a beautiful expression that provides intelligent communication with the viewer."
Sushe said her paintings express, " a simplification of nature." She further described her creative process as, "just starting by putting forms together to find out what develops." She noted, "I like to draw, and I usually start small by putting squares, circles, and rectangles together. Then one object leads to another and I try to find a compositional structure that strikes me. With landscapes and nature-based concepts, it's seeing something in nature and thinking to myself, how can I simplify and abstract this vision and still give it an emotional feeling."
Describing her painting entitled, "Fly me to the Moon," (shown on the left) she explained that she took landscape imagery and added geometric abstraction to it. She then placed geometric elements into the cloud forms and added collage to the mountains. "A lot of those circles," she elaborated, " are pieces of painted paper that I spattered paint on, then cut circles out and glued them down. The little birds flying around were cut out of pieces of black paper. The Pine tree on the right was made from big swatches of black paper that I used to mimic a big pine tree."
Sushe works in acrylics and draws in pencil. She also models clay sculptures. She paints on MDF board, which is a compressed wood about 1/4 inch thick. She also does all of her own custom framing. Her work ranges in size from 8"x10" paintings on paper under glass to large format 4ft. x 5ft. and 3ft. x 6 ft. paintings. Her work is available only as originals, not as prints.
has been interested in art since she was a child. She said her mother was
interested in culture and made sure both she and her sisters took art and
music classes. She recalled that she first attended a children's art school
in Colorado Springs, when she was young and "just stuck with it, thereafter."
Sushe received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona. After college, she and her Husband, Tracy, who is also a painter, returned to Colorado Springs and opened an art and framing shop. They later moved to Manitou Springs and became full time fine art artists, then moved to Denver about five years ago because they felt it offered more cultural opportunities and a stronger art market.
Her paintings range in price from $750 for smaller 16"x20" pieces under glass on acid-free 100% cotton rag board paper to $2,500 for a custom-framed 24"x36" painting on MDF panel. Her largest sized works are 4'x5' paintings on MDF panel, priced at $6,500.
Sushe's work is currently exhibited in Denver at the William Havu Gallery. She also exhibits at Adieb Khadoure Fine Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and at the Sol y Luna - Fine Contemporary Art Gallery in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.
Sushe's work has been shown in exhibitions at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, Metro State College in Denver, the Colorado History Museum in Denver, the Denver Art Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Denver, the Fine Arts Center in Colorado Springs, the Denver Public Library, the Sangre de Cristo Arts Center in Pueblo, the Kirkland Museum in Denver, Children's Hospital in Denver, and in the Frederick R Weisman Collection in Los Angeles.
Sushe's work has been published in Southwest Art magazine and mentioned in two books, Landscapes of Colorado, curated by Ann Scarlett Daley, and Artist Profiles by Michael Paglia, plus the Denver Museum of Contemporary Art's Decades of Influence: Colorado Art 1985 to Present, curated by Cydney Payton.
Sushe, whose given name is Sue, created the name Sushe as a brand name for tags for a line of clothes she painted Chinese calligraphy designs on, after graduating from college. The name was created by adding "she" to her name Sue. After that, the catchy name just stuck and she has used it professionally ever since.