Susan R. Kirshenbaum

art and life - both the cherries and the pits

Selected Exhibitions

A full list of shows is included in my CV, available here

Solo Exhibitions

Barbie on the Cusp, Pacific Felt Factory, San Francisco, CA 2019

BWP/AiRX: Susan R. Kirshenbaum
Black & White Projects

Hosted twice a year, BWP’s Live Residency offers the opportunity for artists to create new work within the gallery during open hours. The residency’s goal is to create a space for artists to complete works that go beyond their past scale or scope, and to provide the public with a venue to interact with the artist, ask questions, and see the process of making. Each residency concludes in a solo exhibition that includes work created during their time in the space.

“Barbie on the Cusp” is a multi-disciplinary project and exhibition created during my Art Residency with Black & White Projects. See more here: portfolio page

Work in progress at the studio - drawing model Tami with Barbie-related props. I’m using pastels and conte.

Now and then, side-by-side photos: left is at the reception for Barbie on the Cusp and right is a black and white taken by my father at somewhere between 10-13 years old which he printed and cut to the size of a Barbie with curved corners. This was in the vitrine in the show.

The book jacket.

The book jacket.

At the reception the installation was complete with: headless dolls in heaps and climbing the walls, props that are in the drawings, printouts from the digital art in the books, a journal to write your own story (& yes I am still looking for other peoples’ stories!) and a large z-fold art book.

At the reception the installation was complete with: my printed book, hazard tape, headless dolls on the floor in police style outlines, and candy.

A sample page from the book.

Women in Silk: Not What you Think & Life Squared, SFWA, San Francisco, CA 2019

SFWA is a member-based nonprofit women’s art organization with a beautiful gallery in the Inner Sunset of San Francisco. I rented their Artists Salon for a month to hold a show of three of bodies of my work. I exhibited my largest and smallest works, from eight-feet tall, four-feet wide chiffon panels I call “Banderas” to 10-inch square shadow boxes, and in the large works between - my six-foot high silk scrolls. I also gave an art talk and threw two receptions.

Photographer and art writer DeWitt Cheng took a series of photos of the reception. Here I am with the Color Block Silk Scroll Series. Photo by DeWitt Cheng.

Photo by DeWitt Cheng.

The “Life Squared Series” were interspersed on walls of the gallery.

Photo by DeWitt Cheng.

More of the “Life Squared Series” which were interspersed on walls of the gallery.


Susan R. Kirshenbaum, The Laundry, San Francisco, CA 2016

The Laundry is a co-work space in an old commercial laundry facility, with a well-lit gallery and large event and office spaces. During Open Studios and beyond, I had a solo exhibition here. Among other works, I had the chance to show my entire series of life-sized silk scrolls. They appear to populate the space with a very large female presence. They are most elegant and alive with a fan blowing a little breeze and causing them to flutter, like a rippling room full of women.

Three of the four White Silk Scroll Series are shown here. Each is six-feet high by four feet wide digitally printed on white silk crepe de chin as a limited edition of three.

I gave an art talk at an Art & Wine Mixer in The Laundry's Gallery.

And Figuratively Speaking, The Troll House (San Francisco, 2017)

During a Summer Art Residency at the Troll House at Pier 26 I worked in an unconventional, high, open space. Being on the water in the bright summer sunlight, with an audience just outside the windows and another audience within my space, helped me form the concept for this site-specific installation. The bright heat of summer drove me to work in sheers and overlays to see the sun and the outdoors come through the pieces. I created five eight-foot high sheer panels in jewel tones. Made to hang from the ceiling in overlapping panels, they barely touched a tall person’s head, but were easy to walk around. The series is called banderas because they like are flags and are fluid and move gently, forming new color combinations as they overlap, depending upon the light and time of day. Each panel consists of a female gesture drawing - powerful, yet light and graceful. They figures fill the room with their presence. They are emblems, representing a moral truth - I felt a need to create a penetrating force into the co-work space which was dominated by young male techies. When the workers came to the office the first day of the show they had to weave their way through to get to their loft workspace. Tey got to experience the sensation of moving through a roomful of giant naked women. They asked "when does this show come down"?

This series of gesture drawings is digitally printed onto white chiffon, then sewn and hung by rods and monofilament from the ceiling. Visible from two sides, seen indoors and outside, they are layered to overlap and change colors. Now being shown at the Wessling Gallery September group exhibition, Friendly Fire.

This series of gesture drawings is digitally printed onto white chiffon, then sewn and hung by rods and monofilament from the ceiling. Visible from two sides, seen indoors and outside, they are layered to overlap and change colors. Now being shown at the Wessling Gallery September group exhibition, Friendly Fire.

Opening reception and art talk for the Banderas Series: A site-specific installation of five, eight-foot high sheer panels of gesture drawings. Digitally created drawings made on an iPad Pro from live models, they digitally printed onto white chiffon, sewn around the edges, and hung from this very high ceiling.

Explaining the Banderas Series (with a monitor with my process videos) at the reception

With the first bandera in the entryway to the series

With the first bandera in the entryway to the series

Viewable from both sides and from outside the windows as well as inside the gallery

At the Troll House Residency on Pier 26, I started out with a solo show which preceded the site-specific installation pieces above.

EXPOSED, BAYVIEW BOAT CLUB (SF, CA 2017)

Here's the gallery wall at the Bayview Boat Club, a private club on SF's Embarcadero, where I was invited for a month-long exhibition. I loved the atmosphere of this hidden gem!

REVEALS, SECRET AGENT SALON (SF, CA 2018)

Looking through my works for hair related pieces I discovered it's one of my themes! Going to the same salon for many years I always enjoyed the art shows they had. It's a large space with high ceilings and it's a great venue for people people to really look at the work. I love the crew here and they are very artistic in their entire approach. They were also an extremely appreciative audience for a show and threw a fantastic reception.

One of the many high walls at Secret Agent Salon in SF's Pacific Heights, where I was invited to have a spring 2018 solo show. In the center is Red Hair Curly and Straight, Reclining, surrounded by two of my more abstract works that deal with mirror images. On the right is "Bay of Bengal Sunset", a digital photo / paint collage with no drawings. On the left is "Filled with Roses" another figurative collage.

Secret Agent Salon Reception with Steve Reeder, co-owner.

Secret Agent Salon Reception showing a display of my small prints and assorted art merchandise including a special show candle (top shelf).

Secret Agent Salon Reception showing a display of my small prints and assorted art merchandise including a special show candle (top shelf).

Curated Group Exhibitions

Infinity - A Downtown Condo Complex (SF, CA 2019)

Invitational Show Curated by SFWA

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This gorgeous SF condo complex - Infinity - invited SFWA to curate a show for their lobbies. The piece on the left is mine, “Indonesian Mood” (Ed. A/P 2019) which was selected for the show. April to June 2019 - By appointment only.

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Advanced, The Office of Senator Scott Weiner (SF, CA 2018)

Invitational Show Curated by Joseph Abbati

Exhibition Video: https://youtu.be/yLbWedFnZnk

Participating artists: Alan Mazzetti, Ali Saif, Ann Phelan, Carolyn Crampton, Denise Laws, DK Haas, George-Ann Bowers, John Wood, Joseph Abbati, Judith Selby Lang, M. Kathryn Thompson, Marius Starkey, Michael Beckler, Miriam Owen, Mitch Nelles, Peter Keresztury, Reenie Charriere, Richard Lang, Roz Ritter, Rusty Weston, Sharon Wickham, Sofia Carmi, Stephen Santamari, Steve Condiotti, Susan R. Kirshenbaum, Tisha Kenny, Wendell Shinn, Rusty Weston, and William Salit. |

Paradise Lost, Back to the Picture (SF, CA 2018)

Invitational Show Curated by Catherine Merrill

"Art Will Save the World. Figurative Paintings & Sculptures by Eight Bay Area Artists Reflect Life in These Times of Darkness, Affirming the Unifying power of Art"

Paradise Lost relates to my desire to convey our everyday humanity - that which motivates people to embrace their human-ness and imperfections. Thinking back to the ideals of a Paradise, and what of what was lost, I too want people to overcome their discomfort about nudity. As long as a nude female body remains controversial I will have this battle to fight through my work. My models show a matter-of-fact naked truth. It's important to me to reflect who we really are and to to keep that uncensored. I want my viewers to be stirred. They might experience a little poke in the gut. To feel the presence of strong women and respond.

Invited artists: Catherine Merrill, Jane Fisher, Sylvie Guillot, Susan R. Kirshenbaum, Stephen Namara, Fernando Reyes, Rick Rodrigues, Michael Ruiz

Just after the group hung the show together

The show included sculpture and ceramics

The show included sculpture and ceramics

Susan R. Kirshenbaum’s portrait was taken at Radian Gallery with “Banderas Series” (foreground and background) during the show. Image by Tony Wessling, Sept. 2018

Susan R. Kirshenbaum’s portrait was taken at Radian Gallery with “Banderas Series” (foreground and background) during the show. Image by Tony Wessling, Sept. 2018

October 2018 reception at Spark Arts Gallery (with model posing on right).

October 2018 reception at Spark Arts Gallery (with model posing on right).

Another view of my work in the show

Another view of my work in the show

Radian Gallery - “Banderas Series”

Radian Gallery - “Banderas Series”

October 2018 at Spark Arts Gallery

October 2018 at Spark Arts Gallery

Reception with the gallery manager, Derek Hargrove

Friendly Fire, Radian Gallery

(SF, CA 2018)

Invitational

Throughout my life, I have somehow had the luck of drawing a remarkable circle of artists as friends. From those I met as a young art student at the University of Michigan, to more recent acquaintances from Burning Man, this show celebrates their lifelong passion for making work that truly moves people.

– Tony Wessling, Founding Director

Invited artists

Check this out! See my recent installation (take the 360 degree virtual tour) of my Banderas Series at Radian Gallery’s first group invitational show, “Friendly Fire” VR Tour at https://www.vpix.net/753007

Abstract & Figurative, Spark Arts Gallery

(SF, 2018)

Invitational two-person show

(included a life-drawing event)

Susan R. Kirshenbaum and Usha Shukla

Life/Live, Arc Gallery (SF, CA 2018)

Invitational live-drawing event & exhibition

Five artists were selected to draw two models for 7.5 minute poses with a live audience of patrons. We sold our work on the spot. For me - working on my iPad Pro with my first audience - this meant drawing then printing my work.

Invited artists: Arlene Diehl, Susan R. Kirshenbaum, Gail Ragains, Eric Saint Georges, & Julianne Wallace Sterling
 

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Arc Gallery Closing Event with Artists' Talks, Life/Live Show, Spring 2018

Arc Gallery Closing Event with Artists' Talks, Life/Live Show, Spring 2018

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GROUP EXHIBITIONS

ArtSpan Open Studios (SF, 2016-Present)

The Laundry, SFWA, and The Allied Box Factory

Over the last few years I participated in Open Studios at The Laundry, at San Francisco Women Artists Gallery (SFWA), and at the Allied Box Factory.

Here’s my wall at SFWA Open Studios 2018. The show of new work was titled “Peeling Back the Layers”.

Here’s my wall at SFWA Open Studios 2018. The show of new work was titled “Peeling Back the Layers”.

Here’s my Group of SFWA Member Artists at our joint Open Studios 2018. My show (behind us) was titled “Peeling Back the Layers”. Fellow artists: Jade, Candice, Amy, Debra, Angela, and Pam.

Here’s my Group of SFWA Member Artists at our joint Open Studios 2018. My show (behind us) was titled “Peeling Back the Layers”. Fellow artists: Jade, Candice, Amy, Debra, Angela, and Pam.

Allied Box Factory Open Studios 2017, at John Goodman's art studio where I draw every Monday. We had a small group show from Drawing Group for Open Studios in 2017.

Here are friends visiting at SFWA Open Studios 2018.

Here are friends visiting at SFWA Open Studios 2018.

SFWA Open Studios 2017.

SFWA Open Studios 2017.

Here’s me and artist/member Usha Shukla at the opening reception at SFWA of two shows - Open Studios and Vibrant Visions in October 2018.

Here’s me and artist/member Usha Shukla at the opening reception at SFWA of two shows - Open Studios and Vibrant Visions in October 2018.

SAN FRANCISCO WOMEN ARTISTS GALLERY (SFWA) JURIED SHOWS

(SF, 2017-PRESENT)

As a member of SFWA I'm delighted to be part of a long history of SF-based women artists as this organization has been around for for over 150 years. I also enjoy being a part of my neighborhood - I'm so close to the Inner Sunset where I live that this is part of my turf. And I've gotten a little more involved lately on the communications  and marketing committee, putting my professional background to good use. It's a very welcoming organization and a great way to get your feet wet in the professional art world and participating in local juried shows.

SFWA reception next to my two pieces “Woman Warrior” and “Karen at Carnaval” in “Celebrating Bay Area Culture”, May 2019

SFWA reception next to my piece in “Textures and Patterns”, April 2019

Below my pieces in the 2018 SFWA show “GAIA: Age of Climate Change” a framed aluminum print.

December 2018, “Small Presents”, Series of three 10-inch square shadowbox pieces (right).

December 2018, “Small Presents”, Series of three 10-inch square shadowbox pieces (right).

More Events & Shows

Blueberry Farm Pop-Up Holiday Art Show & Sale, with a local group of artists in Sebastopol, CA, Dec 2016

Blueberry Farm Pop-Up Holiday Art Show & Sale, with a local group of artists in Sebastopol, CA, Dec 2016

Maker and Moss, my first Pop-up Art Show & Sale in SF, CA, Oct 2016

SNAP! Arc Gallery, SF, CA, 2018

Kids & Art Juried Benefit Fundraiser held by Art Attack SF in 2017. They used my art work for their marketing. I participated again in 2018.

With "Springtime is from Within" in 2017 at SFWA.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

At the end of 2018 I joined the BOD of SFWA as Exhibitions Director for 2019. Look for exciting updates here in 2019!

CITY ART CO-OP GALLERY EXHIBITIONS

As a member of City Art Coop we are all truly a part of this wonderfully diverse organization located in the heart of the Mission District.

A poster from the Graphic Poster Series at the City Art Coop Gallery, March 2019

A poster from the Graphic Poster Series at the City Art Coop Gallery, March 2019

City Art Coop Gallery, July 2018

City Art Coop Gallery, April 2018

City Art Coop Gallery, November 2018