Susanne Strassmann

Born in 1964

Lives and works in Marseilles

Over the past decade photography and painting have developed simultaneously in my work. The photograph is a game, a treasure hunt, sometimes I feel like a pickpocket when I run after ladies with fetish bags or when I photograph art only visible for myself in the high places of contemporary art or in the street. Photography is a perfect mean imposing itself as discreet and quick way of capturing images.
My painting is a figurative painting, oil on canvas. The reality fascinates me much more than fiction. Most of the time my motives are groups of people, which I observed in a specific role, with an eye on their human condition.

Studio paintings are inspired by photographs or digital collages. Often the source of a series of pattern on the internet, I spend a lot of screen time to prepare the series looking for the "perfect image". This is a somewhat anachronistic process of going from photoshop to the easle. Neither preparatory drawing nor episcop, the path of the mental image to the canvas should be as short as possible, the technical means remain minimal and composition of impeccable accuracy. In the best case paintings come out like a chicken lays eggs.

When I go out to paint "in situ" the creative process is different: Under the constraint of the discomfort working with few materials and live models, furtive meetings, exposed to spectators, there is urgency. The concentration required by those difficult conditions gives a special energy to the painting and the brush stroke. No time for reflection. As I talk to people my arm, my hand are working, I discover the result when the session is over. This intensity is like a drug, fascinating and frightening.

Biographical notes translated with the support of the Centre national des arts plastiques - Cnap.