Paintings between 2003-2010 / 2011
In the years 2003-2010 Susanne painted in her house in Avonside until the earthquake from September 2010. She painted mainly very personal and emotional motifs: from expressionist figures and faces to the big collage "Tower of Babel". She used mainly bright acrylic paint and applied bold brush strokes to paper or card bord.A number of "earthqake" paintings were still painted with these techniques and materials in 2011.
Mixed Media Canvasses (2011)
These are two examples of Susanne's mixing of photos and other material glued on canvasses. They are quite playful and narrative. The photograph in "The Beast, the Beauty, and Me" is a photo of the artist some years back. The painting "Jack" uses play-cards: they tell the story of the fight of two Jacks and two Kings over the Queen.
Series of paintings "After the February earthquake 2011" in Christchurch
G. Klimt inspirations
These four smaller paintings form a series of personal and allegorical interpretations of the lives of couples after the earthquake in February 2011 in Christchurch. Certainly the motives are inspired by Viennese painter Gustav Klimt (most noticeable in the painting "A Kiss"), but the paintings are telling an intriguing story - with or without the backdrop of the Christchurch earthquakes.
The series of "creatures" paintings was painted in early 2014. Inspired by driftwood collected at Birdlings Flat beach on the Banks Peninsula, the paintings should stimulate the imagination of the viewer. Animal like forms of the driftwood might as well be imaginary creatures such as dragons, sharks with legs, birds of prey, creatures in the depth of the sea ...
City Dreams (2014-2016)
After her return from a trip to Berlin early May 2014, Susanne painted a series of city dreams. The first of the paintings was "City Night" is almost abstract in its irregular squares and thick lines but it adds a diffuse city night scene with tables and people in front of a restaurant. The paintings "City I" and "City II" also suggest the fascination with the big city with its high house walls, roofs and streets: in "City I", it is a male figure who is drawn into this cityscape; in "City II" a female profile looks longingly into a big city street. The painting "Fata Morgana/Mirage" is a hallucinatory vision of a big city, its places and people: a true mirage seen from desert hills. "At Night" was painted in April 2016 just before the departure to Berlin.
A Christchurch city scence is contained in the painting "The Byegones': it represents the ruin of the well-know Excelsior Hotel in the city center which was destroyed in the 2011 earthquake. In the Christchurch postqake cityscape this landmark is imagined as a time capsule with people behind the the construction fence - and a personal memory of a couple at the bottom of the painting.
Nudes and fairies (2014-2016)
Starting from July 2014 Susanne has been influenced by life drawing. She combines nudes with imaginary contexts and sometimes fairy tale motifs. The painting "The Beauty and the Beast" hints at a surrealistic narrative. The paining "The Reader" shows a female nude on a rock made of paper shavings which come from an old German book. In the windows above her appear the fairy tale scenes of her readings. The painting "Satyr and Nymph" is a variation of the classical-mythological motif in nude paintings. The painting "Woman at Window" relates to Susanne's other paintings on "City Dreams". "Male Nude looking at City" contains a - not so realistic - quotation of the female nudes in classical painting. The painting "The Letter" is made of a Conte drawing at the center framed by city and letter motifs.
A later addition to the nudes paintings is "Female Nude with Hermes" from early 2016.
West Coast paintings (2014-2015)
Some of the paintings painted in 2014 are inspired by trips to the West Coast in New Zealand since August 2014. The background location for the painting "The Lost World" are the cliffs at Charleston where the movie "The lost World"was shot (the film adaptation, 1925, of Arthur Conan Doyle's 1912 novel). Two new paintings were added at Susanne's trip in December: "Road to the West Coast" and "Magic Rock". Susanne was a regular guest at the Art Hotel in Westport where she used the workshop almost until the last moment before her departure from New Zealand. In September 2015, the Art Hotel organized a sole exhibition for her. (see News)
Experiments with water color (2015-2016)
Susanne developed a new painting style in 2015 after and during a series of health related issues and traumas. Experimenting with water colors (as well as water color pencils, ink and wax pencils) turned out to be the answer to the turmoil of emotions and reactions to life style changes. Using water color for the flow and the movement of more or less unreal shapes, lines, and objects was one of the starting points: some paintings can be labeled straightforward abstracts ---- but to the painter there was always a discernable reference to the "real" world. In some cases these references connect to older motifs such as cities and fantasy creatures in landscapes, nudes.... But namely the new techniques go hand in hand with the new motifs to be explored in 2015 which revolve around the body: Here the theme of the heart and the eye is clearly at the center of the composition.
Examples: City Burning; Stranded; Happy Heart and Sad Eye; Rebirth; Crazy Eye. "Happy Heart and Sad Eye" and "Stranded" are already framed.
The painting "Tower" (framed) was added in 2016 in the context of the Susanne's new print making techniques. It uses ink from the roller, water color and chalk pastel.
Woodcuts and Linocuts (starting from 2015)
A new technique in Susanne's art work in 2015 are wood and linocuts. Susanne sees the production of a number wood and linocuts as an opportunity to present some her themes in a playful way - and have them as inexpensive "tasters" or souvenirs for visitors of her (online) gallery or other places where her work is exhibited. Most wood- and linocuts have fairly new motifs and tend toward abstraction. Susanne experiments in some prints with multi colored layers and superimposed blocks which are not identical but designed to produce a certain effect (eg. Happy Eye, Brain, The Alien and the old Chinese). The coloring of the linocut "Couples" produces a wide variation of prints which are more like original paintings.
After her return to Berlin, the multicolored prints "Family" and "City Mountains" were produced in a similar technique.
Collages from Encyclopedia Materials (2015-2016)
End of 2015 and beginning of 2016 Susanne became fascinated with the material from old books in her own book collection, mainly her Brockhaus Encyclopedia. Examples of her collage paintings are: "Magic Forest", "Europäisch", "Danse macabre".
After her her return some of the material was used for the new collage "Der Untergang des Abendlandes".
Experimental paintings after the return to Berlin
The new period in Susanne's works is reflected in the extension and of her mixed media and water color experiments which had started in New Zealand and which indicate a tendancy toward abstraction. Some have been painted in the context of workshops, visits to galeries und artists conversations, for example "Transitions", Horizons" and "Wag the Dog". There are paintings which contain ironic hints to contemparary discussions and political events. For example, the rather large painting "Wag the Dog" was painted right after Donald Trump's election on 8 November. The title is taken from the Black Comedy with the same name in which a fake war with Albania is created in order to win the American presedential elections.
The painting "The return of the Whales" is an emotional response to the severe eartquake from November 2016 at New Zealand's East Coast and mainly the whale watching tourist center of Kaikoura.