Our world has come to be consumed with advancing technology as much as possible and as fast as possible. As a result it has become effortless to discard the past and focus on the future, the next must-have. Susan Reedy, a multi media artist has been able to appreciate the past and its materials through her art. Trained as a painter with an MFA from SUNY Buffalo, her work consists of acrylic paint and graphite, but the heart of her pieces is in the vintage papers she incorporates. Anything from music sheets to pages from old books is up for grabs for Reedy. She explains “The materials are often found and salvaged from flea markets, second hand bookstores, estate sales, and library discards. Of particular interest to me are vintage dictionaries, musical scores, prayer books, maps and billboard paper.”
Reedy’s choices of materials are not at all random, the more the object has an essence of history or a story behind it the better. She says “Papers and books that are torn, marked on, held together with string or tape, anything that shows that it has had a history and a life of its’ own as it is passed from one hand to another is of interest to me.” These deserted pieces of history are transformed into works that are minimal in color variety but create patterns and distorted images that are well balanced in composition and keep you engaged. For Reedy the result of the piece is dependent on the vintage material, stating “My creative process is intuitive and is a direct response to the particular pieces of paper that I’m working with.”
The actual artistic process which she refers to as “the decollage process” is a huge part of her work. She explains “I begin by building up a surface with a dark under painting that is then covered with paper such as a musical score. Additional layers of paint and paper are built up alternately and are partially stripped away, then rebuilt”, this adding and subtracting transforms the materials visually as well as in context which then results in to a truly beautiful piece of art.
Reedy’s work has been displayed at OK Harris Gallery, Castellani Art Museum, Amherst Museum, Hewitt Gallery of Art, and Pierogi Gallery. To see more of her art visit http://susanreedy.com/home.html