Above River

Above River, pastel, 2004

Susan Coleman was born in eastern Missouri, along the banks of the great Mississippi River. She received her BFA in drawing from Webster College, in St. Louis, and her MA (drawing) and MFA (painting) from the University of Iowa. Susan has shown widely in numerous venues throughout the Midwest and Eastern United States. Her work focuses primarily on landscape themes encountered in the local environment.

Susan has taught at the University of Northern Iowa, Kirkwood Community College (Iowa City Campus), as a visitor at Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH, and most recently at Cornell College, Mt. Vernon, Iowa, where she has served as Gallery Coordinator and Lecturer for the Art Department since February 2000.

For as long as I can remember I've loved drawing. Over time, the practice of sitting down to really look at something, has become part of me. Nature has been a source of inspiration since childhood. Drawing from nature encourages spontaneity and playfulness, because in nature there is more than one right answer.

The search for meaning is at the heart of my interest in landscape. Hope is rekindled by the creative spirit I see revealed in nature and the beauty of this world; rivers that continue to flow, and days that continue to dawn. Drawing from nature helps me recognize the sacred in the commonplace, something I'd prefer not to take for granted.

Metaphors as old as human memory are embedded in the themes of landscape. The mysteries of nature still exist, and are akin to the mysteries within us. The garden in the wilderness is as ancient as human imagination, and that yearning for a place of peace is as much a part of our inner world as the vague fear of unforeseen tragedy we glimpse in a nightmare, or on any evening newscast. Despite its long history in western art, I feel that the subject of landscape can serve as a fresh and relevant path for interpreting the human condition. Landscape can make reference to a larger journey.

Susan Coleman's website

This page was first displayed
on February 01, 2005

Find us on Facebook