"Living with this artist is like living in the eye of a hurricane."
Susan Pullman Brooks sees art everywhere: in the natural world, in processes of life and death, and in the lost and forgotten remnants of culture. A perfect day is spent scavenging, searching for bones, glass, or metal from abandoned farm equipment in the fields and rocky ravines at home in western New York, India, or anywhere she travels, then rethinking them in her studio to create sculpture. In that process from discovery to realization there is a deep and rich connection to the worlds of Hindu and Norse mythologies and the solar system informed by both a personal spiritual narrative and inspiring historical worlds. What is laid bare by the earth and sea is an unconcealed passion made vivid in her work.
Earlier in her artistic life, after apprenticing through high school at the Huntington Fine Arts Center, then graduating from The Philadelphia College of Art in 1980 with a BFA in painting, Susan's focus was painting. The conflict between her talent and her interest was so intense that she was relieved to leave art school behind. Her journey took her in new directions. Early in the '90s Susan developed a deep interest in yoga, and founded Flip Dog Yoga in 2003. Her interest in Hindu mythology inspired many trips to the temples of South India. Her artistic turning point came in 2012.
This began a slow, almost painful peeling back of her assumptions about what it meant to be an artist, and what her work could look like. Her passion for pilgrimage brought her back to the woods, digging in the earth, searching beaches, looking for spirits in objects left behind. She has since excavated a vast collection of hundreds of abandoned metal farming implements and animal bones. Her fascination with osteology, unlikely treasures from the earth, astronomy and mythic narratives are at the core of her creative life. For people unfamiliar with Norse, Hindu narratives and astronomy, her work may appear abstract, non-representational, but it is always imbued with the warmth of familiar objects assembled in unusual ways. Her work is a leap beyond two dimensions to the wild joy she felt as a child discovering, exploring and creating.
“The whole house is a canvas for me, every single day things move”