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SUZANNE FERRER

Suzanne Ferrer's blue eyes and the gentleness in her face won't let you in on the original motivations for her pictorial art. These are more concealed, enveloped in the bits and pieces of childhood which affect you forever. Can anyone really go back to the enigmatic shadows locked behind the doors of childhood? Rebelling can help get you there but that isn't what French artist Suzanne Ferrer did.

 

Deeply affected by the harsh conditions of an isolated early life due to the war in France she suffered silently for a long time. Long suppressed deprivation expressed in her paintings finally revealed her true nature.

 

Slowly, even stealthily, inspiration for her art had been building, announcing itself with a flowering of sensibility shaped over the years at midlife, on her fiftieth birthday.

Immersed in this crucible of underlying passions Suzanne Ferrer infused her art with this fire, treating many themes in a variety of styles.

 

Having studied and acquired the basics, her first shows confirmed that her latent gifts were really there. Then, after receiving commissions and recognition she realized that her initial idea of simply working for a small circle of friends was too narrow; that her commitment to her art was leading her in wider directions.

 

An understandable reaction when her innovative technique as well as the eclecticism of subjects met with such success. Subjects in her work include bullfighting, marine landscapes (Venice, Coullioure), Mediterranean women from Afghanistan and Catalonia, beautiful draped nudes, and abstracts. She uses unique vertical bands that high light subject matter.

 

In her multi-media work, with an ingenious use of color and form Suzanne Ferrer shows that she has mastered her art-an art with as much gentleness as exuberance--unveiling those shadows of childhood.

                                                                  Michel Bolasel

 

Precision, swirling and passion show up again in the work of Suzanne FERRER "THE CATALALONIAN." Everything in this inspired work carries the history of the Catalonians, a people proud of its culture and traditions, and equally proud to have transmitted them with tolerance and Mediterranean brotherhood.

 

Just like these tireless travelers, Suzanne Ferrer brings Catalonian sensibilities to her work. In a melancholy and suffering Venice; a sun-baked, embattled Sardinia; or in Minos' mythic Crete where the bull becomes God and where only combat counts, and creates a door through the crushing human condition where we walk for one sublime moment in the company of the gods. Suzanne Ferrer's image of Spain shakes us up--and out of our certitude--poking impassioned holes in our everyday complacency.

                                                    by Maurice Halimi,

Deputy Mayor of the City   of Perpignan,  France, Director of Cultural Affairs

 

"Suzanne Ferrer grabs our attention in 25 canvasses-- where the precision of the water colorist introduces us to a fury of color on every plane. It's new, it's striking, highly expressive and above all incandescent. We want to see more!"

                                                   Andrée Brassens, La Dépêche,

 

"The artist embraces oil, pastel, charcoal and acrylic. Critics are talking--about the appearance on the scene of a dazzling talent…Undeniably Suzanne Ferrer has the aptitude and sensibilities that presage a very bright future."

                                                 Michel Bolasel, L'Independent

 

The figures in Suzanne Ferrer's paintings emerge from swirls and washes of color contained within the broad, vertical brush strokes that dominate her work. At first unfathomable, we soon see the soft curve of a woman's back or the flared skirt of a red Spanish dress.

 

Born in Perpignan, her childhood spent in the dark, desperate days of postwar France, Ferrer's talent lay dormant until she was nearly fifty. Then, with family raised, she took brush to canvas intending at most to entertain friends and create a few gifts for them. But her talent quickly outpaced these modest goals and soon Ferrer's artwork was being shown in galleries across France and Spain and now the US.

 

Ferrer is Catalan, she is called "La Catalane", and she imbues her art with the pride and the sorrow of being Catalan. A centuries old culture, Catalonia has been conquered and oppressed by everyone from Caesar's legions to Franco's fascists. Yet Catalans survived unspeakable horrors by clinging to their language, their music and the brilliant colors of their art. And Ferrer's work reflects this heritage. Images may be broken into wide bands of colors that suggest the delicate panels of a fine Japanese screen or the melancholy spaces between the bars of a prison cell. It is a world where light and color struggle to shed the embrace of dark, ominous tones, unexpected edges and unknowably evil shadows.

 

Ferrer suggests rather than states. We look at a painting and gradually a bullfighter, or a flared Spanish skirt or a wave rolling up a beach, reveals itself in the flowing lines and the passionate colors she has applied to the paper or canvas. A blending of the thematic heat of 19th century romanticism with the visual cool of 20th century abstraction, Suzanne Ferrer's art surprises the eye and speaks directly to the heart.

                                                 Steve Meltzer