“What you sense when you look at a Susan Billings painting is spontaneity and joy in response to light and form. Her work has little to do with art historians’ dusty theories of retrofitted ‘isms’. From bold charcoal and pastels to the delicate haiku of her watercolors, a Billings is clearly a ‘Billings’- an original with a freshness all its own. And since images always speak volumes about the artist who
created them, we can readily assume that Susan Billings
is a person of unrestrained energy who has been living a
very colorful life.”
Telluride Daily Planet
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Every now and then, something catches Susan Billings’ eye that moves her to begin a painting. It could be a shadow or hue, a bowl of sunlit limes, a rambunctious vase of flowers or a vast desert landscape. “There is a moment of delight followed by desire - the desire to capture that vision - to interpret it - to share it.”
Billings says a paintbrush, charcoal or pencil enables her to articulate a compelling story with images. “I feel that I converse best in color and form”. What begins with a feeling or a sketch in her journal becomes one of Billings’ paintings: lovely mixed media pieces where images of horses or bowls are overlayed onto imperfect geometric patterns with intricate stamps. Paintings are inhabited by antique-looking white hollyhocks or the explosion of a mountain bluebird in flight. Zen-like mountain peaks, and crimson-shouldered birds with ancient script for tails flit through snowy branches.
The pieces mix broad, loose strokes of watercolor with expressive lines, words and delicate icons. They have an austere beauty, a hint of Asian influence and a weathered look to them — the result of a complex layering method Billings has been perfecting over the years. “It is a ‘complex simplicity’. There are so many layers and elements, but I like the finished piece to read as simple.”
Windblown by nature, Billings travels and paints, teaching classes and workshops. “I like to think that a lifetime spent in mountains and deserts has honed my understanding of light and space.”
Billings shares time between studios in southwestern Colorado and more recently southern Baja. “This adds the grace and embrace of the sea and the shapes and flora of the dry tropics to my familiar mountain world – more elements still – and another chance for the play of serendipity”.
Click here to see a complete Resume