Susan Washington is an abstract painter from Brooklyn New York. She comes from a family of painters and though has painted all her life she made her career in the fashion industry in NYC for 20 years before relocating to the Pocono Mountains to become a full-time painter.
Her paintings have been shown nationally at Hamptons Market Art & Design, White Room Gallery in the Hamptons, The Affordable Art Fair NY, The Other Art Fair Los Angeles, Art Warehouse Los Angeles, and internationally at Southport Art Center and Antwerpen. Works in collections include David Hoey & Katja Van Herle (LA & Antwerpen), Google NYC, Circle Wealth Management NYC, Jimmy O. Yang (Los Angeles), The Daxton, The Renaissance Palm Springs, Turnberry Ocean Club, HBO writer Joshua Conkel, The Stastny Foundation and numerous private collections worldwide.
Susan’s paintings have also been included in film and motion pictures including The Book Club with Diane Keaton, LA’s Finest, The Morning Show, The Laundromat .
Susan relocated to Baltimore in April of 2021 where she has a large studio on W. Pratt Street. Along with continuing to explore her Subway Sonnet’s body of work, Susan is commissioned for large-scale paintings and works closely with designers on residential and hospitality design projects.
Photo Credit: @stuckphoto
I never considered myself a storyteller, until I did.
My paintings are visual narratives of my experiences, of love, of places, of emotions and of memories I recall from growing up in New York in the 1980s.
Surfaces are derived from memories of the graffitied subway car, public telephone booths, and rolling steel cages that secure neighborhood stores after closing. The mark-making in my paintings emulates the process by which all these metallic surfaces become the backdrop for the graphic history of the neighborhoods and the people who lived there. “The words of the prophets are written on the subway walls and tenement halls -(Sounds of Silence, 1964).
In this environment, the sharpie, self-adhesive sticker, pasted hand-bill, and aerosol paint can quickly communicate and populate an entire neighborhood overnight promoting local punk rock bands and their gigs, political messaging, self-expression, and advertisements.
My paintings feel as if they have been created by random collaboration in the same way public telephone booths and trains are quickly filled up with stickers and graffiti. The surface is archaeological, stratified with graphic artifacts as some, previously placed, are torn away and others overlaid upon existing iconography. The picture plane is scratched eroded and scrawled upon. Song lyrics and Shakespearean quotes share the same space with philosophy and street slang. There is rough poetry in the un-painterly rhythm and coarseness of this approach.
I have tied together all the imagery and text to imbue each painting with a particular and specific mantra that ranges from “fame” and “success” to “love” and “prosperity”. I pay homage to post-war American art and the neo-expressionists.
Icons from the world’s religions and philosophies, pictures torn from art and fashion magazines, and references to lyrics from my favorite bands find their way on my canvas. All paintings are created on canvas using oil paint, spray paint and paper.
© 2016 Franklin G. Burroughs • Simeon B. Chapin Art Museum
Myrtle Beach’s Franklin G. Burroughs-Simeon B. Chapin Art Museum strives to be one of the finest visual arts museums in the Carolinas. With 11 galleries that change throughout the year, Myrtle Beach’s only art museum offers exhibitions featuring paintings, textiles, sculpture, photography, video, ceramics, assemblage, collage and more. A visit to the Art Museum’s exhibitions can be enhanced by its lively programming, including artist receptions, tours, lectures, workshops and classes for both adults and children.