Susan Noyes is a contemporary artist manipulating everyday materials as media and content. Her work derives from personal experience navigating adversity and the daily struggle of rising above hardships to find peace.
She grew up in Richmond, Virginia. Susan moved to northern Virginia in 2001 with her husband, continuing her education in visual art at George Mason University. She received a BFA in painting in 2003, and she earned her MFA from the same university in 2006.
She lived in Italy from 2012-2014 where she found new inspiration from the floors of cathedrals, and historic ruins. During this time she traveled to Morocco where geometric tile patterns dominated the environment covering floors, walls, and ceilings.
In late 2018, Susan began scaling down her work using small panels and incorporating depth. Multiple canvases opened the boundaries of traditional rectangular and square compositions.
I’ve been working with razor blades as my primary media since 2004. I like recontextualizing everyday objects inviting viewers to see new possibilities and experience transformative emotions as objects are repurposed. The blades evoke beauty in the reflective qualities of metal and the blade edges catching the light remind us of their inherent danger.
Repetition in my process represents an obsession with finding order among the chaos of life. Gluing down the blades meticulously is calming and mundane much like the tasks of sewing, ironing, or cleaning, otherwise known as “women’s work.”
I’m drawn to geometric patterns. They are straightforward and predictable. Humans are creatures of habit navigating the patterns of daily life reflected in our relationships, commutes, jobs, errands or exercise regimes. Life can feel methodical at times like my compositions; however, I see beauty and peace in the ordinary.
I manipulate individual pieces patiently knowing each one leads to revealing the whole work. I enjoy the challenge of solving the mathematical puzzle. I’m driven by shape and the interaction between positive and negative space. Surface, texture, and design dominate the visual landscape of my work.