Danese is pleased to present its inaugural exhibition of sculpture and drawings by Susie MacMurray.
Formerly a classical musician, the Manchester-based artist retrained as an artist, graduating with an MA in Fine Art in 2001, and has built up an international exhibition profile.
As Kathleen Soriano observes in her 2011 essay for MacMurray's catalogue: "A first encounter with the work of artist Susie MacMurray inevitably places the viewer right at the centre of the key issue in her work – the tension between extremes of sensual and aesthetic response: Ying/yang; anima/animus; soft/hard; a dress/not a dress; love/death; freedom/constraint; power/submission. The seduction of her pieces draws you to them with a lightness of touch that belies their complexity and, more often than not, their aggressive, confrontational qualities that deny their commentary on difficult issues such as anorexia, mortality and bereavement.
The beauty of MacMurray’s work occasionally belies the power and strength held within it. Whilst the sense of loss has nearly always been present in her work, it is also as much about the nature of memories and remnants of our existence. She gathers and gives new life and meaning to lost hair, fallen violin bow hair, harp strings, to a loss of time and tradition — as we see her installations strive to capture the stories of the past, be it the lives of National Trust properties or the flint walls of the Sussex towns and villages as in Shell. These strings of our experience carry the memories of our lives, our talismans that MacMurray would argue need to be considered in Buddhist terms as part of the bigger flow, where we recognise that all things pass, whether in a minute or in a million years, so that we resist being paralysed by the possibilities of loss. That does not stop her from exploring that loss within her work but we should not be seduced by the vulnerability that it suggests given her position as artist with the control and authority that she has over the interpretation of that loss, and ultimately in the powerful and confident position that those pieces now assume."