Susie Ganch | Glancing Back, Looking Forward
April 26 – May 28, 2013
Artist Susie Ganch is currently Associate Professor and Head of the Metals Program at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond Virginia. She is also Director of Radical Jewelry Makeover, an international traveling community jewelry mining and recycling project that was recently hosted by the Wheelwright Museum (in Santa Fe, NM), Queensland College of Art Griffith University and Artisan Gallery (in Brisbane, Australia). Solo exhibitions include Velvet da Vinci, University of Wyoming-Laramie, University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh and Quirk Gallery, Richmond, VA. Group Exhibitions include: Unexpected Pleasures (Design Museum, London, England, and the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia), Heat Exchange (Shemer Art Center and Museum, Phoenix, AZ, and Kunstmuseen der Stadt Erfurt, Galerie Waidspeicher im Kulturhof Krönbacken, Erfurt, Germany), Surface and Substance (Contemporary Applied Arts and Electrum Gallery, London, England and Ruthin Craft Centre, Wales), Evolution and Imagination (Cameron Museum, NC). Collections include the Asheville Art Museum. Susie is a recent recipient of the Theresa Pollack Fine Art Award, a VA Commission for the Arts Grant, and multiple VCU Faculty Research Grants. Publications include: Metalsmith Magazine (2008, volume 28, no. 3, cover article), The Compendium Finale of Contemporary Jewellry Makers, and Bijoux. Illustration et Design.
…I recently began using pre enameled sheet steel, forming it, soldering it, and creating simple forms that reveal the life cycle of the resulting piece. They are intentionally raw, their surfaces containing hundreds, thousands of little cracks. Solder is left on the surface, flux will come out over time, and because the steel is distressed (by forming), it will continue to shed bits of enamel. They will age and evolve, gaining rust losing enamel while the diamonds and rubies on the surfaces will remain the same. I am considering my own evolution and what it means to transition into the next period of my life. In a culture that values youth as the highest form of beauty in an industry (jewelry) motivated by beautification, these pieces reflect back the changes I see in my mirror every morning. This jewelry will eventually disintegrate leaving some lonely diamonds and rubies behind. (In my imagination, they are the true loser in the story). Optimistically, I want this work to “die” making room for what will come next. Part of my responsibility as an artist is to think of future generations and what they might need in order to make room for what jewelers sometime down the road will want to make…