Susan Andrews Grace is the author of five books of poetry, most recently Philosopher at the Skin Edge of Being (Signature Editions, 2013). She is also a visual artist. She teaches creative writing in Nelson, BC and the West Kootenay where she has lived since 2001. She holds a BA in Philosophy and an MFA in Creative Writing, Poetry.
As a visual artist my work echoes and honours textile traditions as it engages historical and theoretical concerns about human, and more specifically, feminine existence. To that end the work nearly always involves textiles and what can be loosely termed fibre such as wood, paper, and string. It is most often three-dimensional. I am interested in the decomposition of cloth and arresting that process in order to see it better. Over the last fifteen years in experiments with methylcellulose, most commonly used in book and paper making, I have found ways to arrest decomposition and to collage cloth so as to keep its 'hand.' I almost always employ layers and in this way I think my practice as poet overlaps the visual one. To my mind, cloth is the most powerful metaphor for the metaphysical and string technology the most important but least celebrated example of human ingenuity. I suspect that is because both exist prominently in the feminine realms.
The concept of seriality in art and writing has been a big influence on me. Artists such as Eva Hesse, Louise Nevelson, Louise Bourgeois, and Anne Truitt have, to my mind, worked in that mode. I admire Betty Godwin’s use of printmaking processes, such as using a garment as the plate.