Susan Stainman is an interdisciplinary artist, working in sculpture, installation, and social practice. Her current body of work investigates landscapes of utopia as they intersect with her Buddhist meditation practice. Rather than places and ideas of intangible perfection, Stainman posits, utopias are moments of complete presence to our internal and external reality, akin to the Buddhist idea of natural mind, or buddhanature. From this vantage point, we are able to step into a brighter, more whole future reality.
Her sculptures are sensual, brightly colored works combining textiles and other quotidian materials to create beautiful, uncanny objects. Referencing fashion, women’s domestic labor, and Surrealism, Stainman uses cultural tropes around beauty to create an embodied response in the viewer as a method of exploring the connection between body and mind. It is this embodied reaction, rather than a purely intellectual response, that allows for the contemplation of new ideas and realities.
Her social practice utilizes sites of socially acceptable forms of intimacy as another method of exploring utopian visions. In both Sipobles and Come Home, Stainman used the framework of intimacy shared over home-cooked meals to create temporary communities, in which participants shared their ideas and hopes for forming new society and their conception of an internal “home.”
PAST SOLO EXHIBITIONS:
Color All The Way Through, 2014
PAST GROUP EXHIBITIONS:
Women On The Line, 2017
Who Cares?, 2017
New Art In An Old House, 2016
If These Walls... II, 2015
If These Walls..., 2014