My work has always involved the concept of place, usually manifested in a color palette or series of forms that recall places I’ve visited. Since moving back to Richmond from New York two years ago, my work has taken on a lighter, more verdant energy. I’m making psychological landscapes from memory, based on feelings rather than direct observation. They’re an attempt to tap into the sensation of a place. I wonder, now that we are all staying in one place more or less, are we seeing our surroundings differently? How will this experience change our understanding of place and home?
Having recently returned to Richmond after several years living in New York, Sue Heatley combines printmaking and painting techniques to express abstraction routed in mark making. Over her thirty year studio practice, she has created collage-like compositions through applications of myriad materials, including acrylic paint, quick-drying pigments and ink, on varied backgrounds like textured linen and thick rag paper. In her linen paintings, Heatley works layer by layer; swooping brushwork, often in pale tones, obscure glimpses of contrasting tones beneath, adding an element of mystery to each painting. In recent works on paper, like Fool’s Forecast, her compositions evoke biomorphic forms through ethereal marks balanced on a muted ground.
Heatley received her BA in Art History from Hiram College in Ohio and later studied printmaking at the Richmond Printmaking Workshop in Virginia. She has exhibited at The Drawing Room, East Hampton, NY; Site Brooklyn, NY; the International Print Center and Turn Gallery, both, New York, NY; 1708 Gallery, Quirk Gallery and The Visual Arts Center, all, Richmond, Virginia. Her work is represented in numerous public and corporate collections, including the United States Department of State, Washington, DC; Esteé Lauder Companies, New York, NY; Special Collections and Archives of Virginia Commonwealth University, Medical College of Virginia, Hunton & Williams and Owens & Minor, all, Richmond, VA.