Place making and notions of identity related to space are themes Susan Leen interrogates in her artistic practice. Using cartographic language, the artist dismantles the systems used to present territories; through different political and objective trajectories, she aims to create a new vocabulary to express overlooked realities in different environments. This research takes form in paper based sculpture, installation, drawing and cut-out work. Her approach to abstraction through cartography aims to express the complexity of location in a tactile way. She privileges light, often delicate material to emphasize the fragile nature of the different systems in question, ecological or societal, and the inherent tensions contained within these spaces.
During her time in Rio de Janeiro, Susan will focus on local geographic identity and how this is complexly linked to social stratification. She’ll be examining local terrains looking at urban morphology and it’s effects on the social, cultural and political dramas of the city. The artist takes a poetic approach to exploring the wide ranging repercussions of colonialism and the formation of territories, investigating identity politics, architecture and distribution of resources using plastic forms. Her research focuses on the concept of resilience as a result of unease in a region and as a constant in human nature and territories worldwide. Considering all systems of life in a state of constant flux, resilience and process of ‘repair’. Susan will draw on the text ‘Pour Une Topologie Sociale’, by French architect and anthropologist Philippe Bonnin, looking at the role of space in our societies, how it reflects social facts and influences relations but also it’s psychological and emotional aspects.
Construct the Future, Hoxton Gallery, London, U.K., What if We Got it Wrong?, F.E. Mc William Gallery, Co.Down, U.K., Et si on s’etait trompe?, Irish Cultural Centre, Paris, France, Relational Geographies UAL Gallery, High Holborn, London, U.K., Ce n’est pas une heure pour les histoires de revenants, Rentrons! Villa Belleville, Paris, France, Young, SO Fine Art Editions, Dublin, IRL, Carnet de Reves III, Gallery Les Moulins, Ile-de-France, France , Describing Architecture: Work in Progress, The Octagonal Room, Dublin, IRL, Carnet de Reves II, Gallery Les Moulins, Ile-de-France, France, La Belevedere, Subjective Mapping, project installed in Belleville park, Paris, Describing Architecture: scale and medium, Architectural Association of Ireland, Dublin; Genius Loci, ‘Axa in Action’ AXA, Prague, Czech Republic.
Joya Arte y Ecologia Residency, Andalucia, Spain. 2015: Food Water Life, winter residency at the Banff Centre, Alberta Canada. ,2013/5: Artist in Residence, La Forge, Belleville, under the direction of Point Ephemere