Suzanne Pratt

Artist Statement

My art is primarily a harnessing of light but is also a celebration of routine. The compositions privilege structures where there is no end or beginning. Some play with symmetry, others with a highly structured composition. Either way, they are about containing eternity in the moment.

It is a fact of physics that the very light that illuminates a surface bounces back upon the viewer. That same light that bounces off the wall is reflected off the back of the sculpted relief of my work. These backs of my cut paper are colored and the light effect is a glowing halo from the simple physics of light interacting with surfaces.

Harnessing light is for me a small dance with the infinite. The objects I create are paintings and sculptures. They hang on the wall and mimic illusionistic space as a painting, yet they are equally sculptures in that they exist in three dimensions free of illusionistic space. The actual light that creates the halo effect around my forms is real and present in the gallery.

Historically, Los Angeles where I reside was the birthplace of the Light and Space movement about sixty years ago. This movement was a natural progression of Modernism and I believe that the possibilities to harness and shape the physical sensations of the infinite as art have only just begun. My work retains a minimal sensibility and a great love of pleasing the viewer with intricate visions.




Los Angeles artist Suzanne Pratt is a California native. The horizontal geography of open, settled spaces is the structure of her psyche. Her journey as an artist has been the long path of reducing form to its essential structures and harnessing the power of the resulting singularity. An artist’s development takes a lifetime but she had two experiences that got her to where she is now. The first was an interaction with artist Roland Reiss where he observed that the interesting part of her work, then a more conventional abstract painting of circular forms, was when there were fewer things going on. In a lifetime of studio visits, this one comment broke the ice. Years later it was James Turrell who put it all together when he observed that shadows themselves could be the darkest line and that she might never need pick up a paintbrush again. Her evolution toward sculptural wallworks that harnessed the light and space around themselves to complete their objecthood was on its way.

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