Suzy Poling

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What Is My Work About? 

I work with photography, sound, painting, collage, film, video, performance, installation and sculpture. I am researching multi-dimensional interferences between the organic and mechanical through these various mediums. I would consider myself to be an experimental performance artist who studies geometry, ecological anomalies, phenomenon and synthesis through a spectrum of forms. I find otherworldly places on Earth and respond to them sonically and visually. I aim to connect my outdoor field work to my indoor research by using multiple techniques and strategies. My work is very immersive and I want the viewer to be able to step inside of the worlds that I am describing.
My background is in photography and sound but I have developed other skills over the years through endless experimentation. My sound work is an important component to my practice and I feel that it accompanies my visual work in a very specific way.


Artist Statement

My work explores the process of transformation, cyclical forces of nature, and the phenomenon of sound and light. I work with multiple mediums such as painting, collage, sculpture, performance art, photography, sound and installation. I explore the complexities of resonant frequencies, refraction, dissonance and regeneration within my research. My work is a conversation between destruction and the process of renewal. It is important for me to restore beauty and observe things as new again after a process of falling apart and deconstructing. I also make relatively complex pictures with very simple and rudimentary resources. The relationship between simplicity and complexity is important to my process.

I experiment with small sets through using mirrors, light and optics to discover the depths of geometry and capture how light bends. My work explores the interference of transmissions and frequencies through analog materials and digitization. Scale is an important component to my work as I am interested in pushing the parameters of miniature models, vastly massive landscapes, portals and dimensional space.

I am also interested in geological anomalies and occurrences; volcanic sites, natural volatile minerals, and planetary tectonic features. My work explores various descriptions of materiality and the emotional and psychological response to violent activities within ecology. The intention of my work is to connect the sublime and hypnotic to subject matter that is historically chaotic, such as volcanic sites.

All of my subject matter goes through some type of metamorphic experience or transformative process, whether through distortion of audio synthesis, painting experiments, refraction of optics and mirrors, video feedback or film manipulation. I am simply trying to replicate patterns, activities and designs that exist within this planet or on other planets.



EDUCATION B.A. Photography, Columbia College of Chicago AWARDS/ DISTINCTIONS
2012 SECA Award Nominee at the SFMOMA
2012 Liminal Space, Artist in Residence, Oakland, California 2008 Southern Exposure, Artist in Residence

2005 Bemis Center of Contemporary Art, Artist in Residence, Omaha, Nebraska 2004 CAAP Grant, Chicago, Illinois
2002 Illinois Art Council Fellowship and the CAAP Grant, Chicago, Illinois
2000 and 2001 Albert Weisman Scholarship, Chicago, Illinois

Harperʼs Magazine, New York Times, Wired Magazine, Dazed Digital, New York Arts Magazine, Los Angeles Times, Beautiful Decay Magazine, Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times, Flavorpill, The Week, New City, San Francisco Bay
Guardian, SF Weekly, New Times in San Luis Obispo, FFFound, But Does it Float, East Bay Express, The Daily
Californian, The Orgegonian, Interzone.

2014 ”Square, Cube, Grid Transformations”, Solo Show, UFO Factory, Detroit, Michigan

“There is No Beginning, there is No End”, Group Show Mata Gallery, Los Angeles, California “Please Yourself”, Group Show, Self Actualization Center, Houston, Texas
“Video Art by Suzy Poling”, Solo video screening, Echo Park Film Center, Los Angeles “Ungrund Collective”, Group Show, Ditch Projects, Eugene, Oregon

“Video Art by Suzy Poling”, Solo video screening, Human Resources, Los Angeles
2013 “Elemental Forces”, Solo show, Krowswork Gallery, California
“The Vital Illusion”, Group Show, Veritgo Gallery, Denver, Colorado
“Antennae, Prism, Mirror” with Kamau Patton, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco, California “Mirror Crystal System”, Night Light, SOMA Arts, San Francisco, California

“Smashism” Performance, Sound and Video Group Show, Human Resources, Los Angeles Smashism” Performance, Sound and Video Group Show, ATA, San Francisco
“Dirty Fingers”, Group Show, Cinders Gallery, Brooklyn, New York
2012 “Elemental Forces”, Solo Show, Disjecta Space, Portland, Oregon

“Document0- an unofficial satellite of Documenta 13”, Krowswork, Oakland, California
Video Screening with ESP TV (NYC) at Liminal Space, Oakland, California
“Smashism”, Video Screening, ATA, San Francisco, California
“I am so goth, that I am dead”, Group Show, Queen’s Nails Projects, San Francisco, California
“Shifts in the Horizon”, with Chris Duncan, San Francisco Arts Commission, San Francisco, California “Crystal Palace”, Group Show, Art Space, New Haven, Conneticut

“The Burning Leaves of Autumn”, Group Show, Krishna Kumer Gallery, Los Angeles, California
2011 “Into the Center of the Earth”, Solo show, Cal Polytechnic University Gallery, San Luis Obispo, California “Land of Mirrors”, video, sound and light art installation at the Berkeley Art Museum, Berkeley, California “TBA” a group video performance, Portland Institute of Art, Portland, Oregon
“Triad Towers”, three person show at the LAB, San Francisco, California
“Bay Area Currents”, Pro Arts Gallery, Oakland, California
“Natural Phenomenon”, Solo show, ZG Gallery, Chicago, Illinois
2010 “Zone Modules”, Solo show at Queen’s Nails Annex Gallery, San Francisco, California
“Alchemical Feedback”, Solo show, DNJ Gallery, Los Angeles, California
“Cylindrical Forces”, video and audio performance at the San Francisco Electronic Music Festival, Brava Theater, San Francisco, California
“Sonic Tube”, Light Art Installation for the San Jose Museum of Art Festival, San Jose, California
“Channeling Tower”, Video and Sound Installation, Southern Exposure, San Francisco , California
Video performance at Kamau’s Patton “Icons of Attention”, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts,
San Francisco,California
“Dreaming of a Glass Egg”, Video and Sound Installation, Transmodern Festival, Baltimore, Maryland
2009 “Zone Modules and Monoliths”, Solo show at Tartine, San Francisco, California
“A Universe We Can Believe In”, California College of Arts, San Francisco, California
“The Big Three”, at Michael Rosenthal Gallery, San Francisco, California
“Artists Files”, continue exhibition at Bemis Center for the Contemporary Arts, Omaha, Nebraska
2008 “Object Agency”, video, sound and light installation, Southern Exposure, San Francisco, California “Glass House” a collaboration with Kamau Patton for Machine Projects and the GLOW festival,
Santa Monica, California
“Experimental Art Festival”, The Smell, Los Angeles, California
“Hijacked” Australian Center for Photography, Sydney, Australia
Foto Foreo Festival, Fremantle, Australia
2007” Wonderland of Decay: New Photographs by Suzy Poling”, Solo show at Zg Gallery, Chicago, IL
2006 “Bridge Art Fair”, Participating artists with Zg Gallery, Miami, Florida
“(Un)Natural History”, Zg Gallery, Chicago, Illinois
“Reclamation”, Zg Gallery, Chicago, I Illinois
“East Side Story”, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco, California

“Ok City”, Egopark, Oakland, California
Transmutation Headquarters, Lobot Gallery, Oakland, California
2005 “Transmutation Headquarters”, Solo show, Carrie Secrist Gallery, Chicago, Illinois “Chthonic Cartographers”, Chesapeake Gallery of Harford College, Maryland “Allegorical Landscape”, Invitational Exhibition, Evanston Art Center, Evanston, Illinois “Spontaneous Generation”, Ars Subterraneana, New York, New York
“New Gallery Artists”, Carrie Secrist Gallery, Chicago Illinois
“Sound and Vision”, Auto Gallery, Oakland, California
“50 Artists”, Lobot Gallery, Oakland, California
“Spring Auction”, Evanston Art Center, Evanston, Illinois
“Art in the Park”, Carrie Secrist Gallery, Chicago, Illinois

Renaissance Society of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois
“Art Chicago Exposition”, Bucketrider Gallery, Chicago, Illinois
“17th Evanston + Vicinity Biennial Juried Exhibition” Evanston Art Center, Evanston, Illinois 2003 ”Cake and Polka Parade”, Heaven Gallery, Chicago, Illinois
2002 ”Curious Terrors”, Office Space, Chicago, Illinois
2001 “Themed Escape”, Hat Factory, Chicago, Illinois
2000 “Chicago in the Year 2000”, Chicago Cultural Center, Chicago, Illinois
“Chicago Palaces”, Cliffdwellers Club, Chicago, Illinois
“On the Prowl”, Butcher Shop, Chicago, Illinois

Headlands Center for the Arts
De Young Museum
Bemis Center for the Contemporary Arts California College of Art
Columbia College of Chicago
San Francisco Art Institute
Cal Polytechnic University

Todd Simon from Bemis Center
Carrie Secrist Gallery
530 Collection dedicated to David Ruttenburg Columbia College Film Department
Columbia College’s Special Collections Chicago in the year 2000

“Signs of the Apocalypse and Rapture”, Forty Front Press, 2008
“Hijacked: New American and Australian Photography”, 2007
“530 Collection”, Dedicated to David Ruttenburg a collector in Chicago, 2004
“Nature”, 6×6 series Columbia College of Chicago, 2005
Metropolitan Museum of Art Catalogue, Cover shot (a portrait of a Modern Art collector) SOUND PERFORMANCE
“Two Arp 2600s, Two Cellos”, collaboration with Ben Tiinker, Mills College, Oakland, California “Activating the Medium”, 23five Festival, San Francisco Art Institute
“Colour out of Space Festival”, University of Brighton, Brighton, UK
“International Noise Conference”, Miami, Florida
“No Fun Festival”, Brooklyn, New York
“Pictures and Sound”, scoring films, University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois

California College of Art, Oakland, California
University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Massachusets
Various performances in Art spaces in London, Berlin, New York, Providence, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Oakland, Detroit, Baltimore, Philadelphia, Portland and Florida