Susan's "subject matter, context and medium...present a coherent artistic vision"
John Torreano, Clinical Professor of Studio Art, NYU

"Great stuff. Love your work."
Seymour Chwast

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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Gone Fishing

Dear Readers,

I HATE TO LEAVE YOU all just when we've become such good blogmates discussing art and life. I've had a wonderful time chatting with you this year. Has anyone decided which we like better, art or life? Not very likely. That would be tantamount to deciding which we like better, blood or oxygen. Art and life are too interconnected–one cannot choose between them. We have to embrace both wholeheartedly.

Fun though this has been, I must now take my leave. Every Summer I go fishing–not for fish, but for the many esoteric, enlightening, exhilarating adventures the Sea of Life has to offer. I especially like to experience things I've never done before. Actually, now that I think about it, fishing in the Sea of Life is better than blood or oxygen. Everything in the Sea of Life is grist for my painting/writing mill. In addition to writing my book, Depingo Ergo Sum, and preparing for my October show, some of the things I wish to experience on my sabbatical are:

Riding a zebra. In my entire life, I have never ridden a zebra. It's got to be easier than riding my favorite horse, the willful Freckles. That supercilious stallion used to intimidate me whenever I mounted him by turning his head slowly and irreverently while looking down at me as if I were addled. I suppose he thought he was too high class for mere riding, because he was a jumper. I tried to curry favor with him by whispering sweetly "We're going to have a nice, polite ride, right Freckles? And you're going to be a gentlehorse, and not throw me, bite me or crush my legs against any stone fences by cantering too close to them, right Freckles?" The look on his horsey face clearly said, "Yeah, right!"

But I digress. I am going to make a point, or should I say a stripe, of riding a zebra this month. It's written in black and white. I must do it. I've heard they gallop at a very fast clip, so we both might work up a sweat during the ride. Perhaps then I can experience another thing I've always wanted to do...

Shower under an elephant. That should be energy efficient, refreshing, and I might even get clean. At least my skin will look better than the elephant's. Then I'll be prepared t0...

Dance a pas de deux with an ostrich. I look forward to pirouetting en pointe in a feathered tutu and being swept up in adagio by an ostrich who is supporting my fragile dancer's body above his head with his wings as he gracefully turns and balances me. I've dreamed about doing this my entire life, but my mother would never let me. Then again, maybe I'll...

Go really wild and dive even farther into Photoshop which is just as exotic as the above when you consider my technical acumen. But catch a fish? Never.

I have a few words on the subject of fishing. First of all, it is quite an unsportsmanlike enterprise to pluck a fish out of its environment with a barbed hook through its lip. When I point this out to my fisherman friends, their stereotypical response is that fish don't feel pain. They often add that they throw them back after they catch them.

Depingo is not one to spoil fishermen's fun. I just want them to be more empathetic with their prey.
Let them imagine that they are walking down the street, going to work or picking up their girlfriend for a dinner date (which dinner I hope is not going to include a fish course.) While sauntering along, my fisherman friend comes upon a fat, lit Montecristo cigar or a slice of chocolate devil's food cake floating right under his nose. The aroma is to die for–and the fisherman may do just that. He lunges forward to get it into his mouth as fast as possible. He's hooked!

To see what this is like, pretend you've been hooked. The next thing you know, you are out of this world, transported to a higher plane inhabited by a more complex form of life, surrounded by air you can't breathe, with a sharp hook through your lip. You are punctured and bleeding, choking and heaving, flipping around because you can't breathe and are terrified by the alien appearance of the creature who hooked you. Are you going to be OK with it if he decides not to eat you and throws you back suffering from hypoxia and a lip with a hole in it? No! You are going to be furious and your girlfriend is going to be even angrier because you are now really late for your date. I say to the fishermen of the world: did you ever even consider that fish might have dates?

To rectify the sporting inequity of fishing, I have devised a new methodology that will make fishing more of a real contest. All you have to do to fish Depingo-fashion is to throw away your rod. Keep the line with the hook on the end of it, though. Next, attach another hook to the other end of the line. You should now have a length of line with a hook on each end. Hook one of the hooks through your own lip, put something that fish find delicious on the other hook and throw that one into the water. Oh, and don't use your hands; clasp them behind your back. If you get a bite, you must bring the fish in using only your cheek muscles. Then you and the fish will be evenly matched. It will be a battle of equals and you will be a true sportsman.

Or, you can skip the hook through your lip and do as I will be doing for the next few weeks– fishing in the Sea of Life. My mind, senses, toothbrush and laptop are already packed in my suitcase, which I've bound up with a chain of nerve synapses. I'm looking forward to catching many new experiences. I'm going to miss you, but I'll be back after labor day. Until then, I'll be keeping in touch via postcards from the Sea of Life! So watch for them on this blog.

Paint on,


Sunday, May 22, 2011


I love the New York Public Library.
It's the perfect place to read my Kindle.
If it rains, I go inside.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Monday, May 2, 2011