A Dark Matter – Cyanide’s Legacy
I am drawn to printmaking because of the endless potential for variations on a theme. I have little interest in creating multiples, which generally defines the medium. To me, this captures the very nature of our mysterious existence in this universe: endless variations on a theme… My mixed-media prints are always one-of-a-kind works. They all begin, however, with a limited number of collagraphic plates. The collagraphic process is about texture - thin layers of found objects and modeling material are used to gradually build the printed image. The technique relates directly to collage, relief sculpture and mixed media. The collagraph process is sculptural in its conception and my understanding of spatial relationships and the effects of light are strongly influenced by my experience in technical theater. Utilizing multiple plates and techniques serves to create layers of texture and these echo the layers of meaning and metaphor in the images. I feel the collagraph process is well-suited to this task- I try to retain shadowy intricacies and textures that encourage the viewer to look carefully and be present with the image, and ultimately to leave the piece with the sense that a small mystery has been presented to them. I’ve appropriated the term "poetic knowledge" - for the kind of knowledge one receives from ideas that lack exact reference but nevertheless have a compelling force of truth - to talk about the inspiration for my work. What drives my work is the mystery of it all. It isn’t in the myriad “answers” to these universal questions, but in the visually astounding ways that these questions continually pose themselves. Susan M Heggestad is a South Dakota born, California raised, mixed-media artist. She received her Bachelors of Fine Arts degree in Printmaking from the University of South Dakota, and her Masters of Fine Arts degree from SUNY at Buffalo. She was recently the Interim Instructor in Art History at the University of South Dakota. Susan lives with her large family, and makes her work, in her hometown of Vermillion, South Dakota.
Photo Credit: Susan Heggestad, Sanford Underground Research Facility
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