I believe the artist has the opportunity and consequently the responsibility to communicate. The nature of that communication is personal to and defined by the artist.
As an artist, I began painting in minimal abstraction focusing on perception and communication. My first solo show was called chromatic consonants concentrating on perception and the emotional response to the physiological as well as psychological variables of color and texture.
These paintings were extremely minimal and consequently, I was consistently challenged by the desire, opportunity and responsibility to communicate—always asking “how does the audience relate to this work and how does this work relate to my audience”.
I ultimately concluded that getting closer to one’s self allows you to get closer to your audience and universality.
As I continued to explore visual vehicles of communication I have moved beyond abstraction looking to explore the personal perceptions and the emotions of reality through the incorporation of the figure and face as mediums of visual speech. Our reality is swayed by society and has influenced me to make statements to seek the truth, to effect clarity and authenticity beyond the tripe of media.
This can be clearly seen in my current series the Spring Series, as well as the Venus Nudes, the Narrative paintings and the imaginary Portraits of Every Man whose faces are used as a conduit for an emotional interaction between the viewer and the painting.
Ultimately all of the explorations are manifestations of a desire for communion with self and hopefully with the audience.
– Barnett Suskind