Susan Sensemann [born 1949] is an American artist, educator and arts administrator, most known for her detailed, largely abstract patterned paintings and photomontages reflecting gothic, baroque, spiritual and feminist sensibilities. She has exhibited her work at venues including the Art Institute of Chicago, A.I.R., The Living Art Museum [Reykjavík], Indianapolis Art Center, Chicago Cultural Center and Art Institute of Boston on four continents. Her work has been widely reviewed and resides in numerous private, university and corporate collections. Sensemann is known as a versatile and prolific creator, whose ideas have led her to explore diverse painting materials, media (drawing, photography, collage, performance), subject matter (architectural, botanical, biological and organic forms, self-portraiture), and styles from abstraction to realism. Critics note her work's densely packed compositions, shallow fields of oscillating space, complex tactile surfaces, and sensuous color and linearity. James Yood wrote that Sensemann's abstract paintings were "fraught with meaning, charged with value, and seething with import" in their spiritual seeking. Art historian Leisa Rundquist described her photomontage self-portraits as "strangely sensual, yet disturbing" images drawn from "the depths of the unconscious..."
In addition to her art career, Sensemann was an art professor and administrator for over three decades, most notably at the University of Illinois at Chicago and the grassroots women's cooperative Artemisia Gallery. She has also been a frequent curator and lecturer, and in recent years, begun writing fiction and teaching courses in mindfulness meditation. Sensemann has been based in Chicago since 1979.
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