18 May to 29 June 2019
Susan Simpson won our Open 2018 with her enigmatic self-portraits. These photographs are a part of a wider narrative which you will now get the opportunity to view in this solo show.
Susan works in multi-media, using simple materials such as felt, cardboard, paint and glue to make sculpture and installation. A trained commercial photographer, she combines the gloss of photographic images with hand-crafted objects. These child-like methodologies allow Susan a freedom of expression previously inhibited at a young age.
She explores personal themes of gender, class and identity and how childhood experiences leave their legacy in our lives.
” Coupled with class, the way I looked imposed a vulnerability on me. I didn’t know ‘the male gaze’ was a thing, I thought that’s just how the world was and I didn’t fit. The only male to take a shine to me was the pervert who used to touch me up in his front room of a lunch time…the last time I felt like a princess.
…I am becoming my own princess, a princess in a plus size costume, building my own pedestal from breeze blocks and climbing on to the thing. I am accompanied by my trusty steed, a brutal hobby horse; a reflection of battles won and lost. ”
In Susan’s work, she shares her vulnerabilities and also examines how our defences can damage as well as protect us. She invites us to identify our own defences, write them down and deposit them in the amnesty box as a first step in letting go. The messages will be gathered and used to create a new art installation addressing the theme of fear and surrender.
25 May 2pm onwards
In conjunction with this exhibition, Susan is chairing an informal debate here at 20-21. This will be an opportunity for local artists and creatives to come together, network and discuss how much of ourselves we put in the public domain through our artwork. The session will take place in the cafe area. For more information mail to: