Biography

Susan Ferguson was born on the West Coast of the South Island, New Zealand and raised on a farm in the Maruia Valley by parents who encouraged her painting. Growing up she fostered a keen love for painting en plein with her mother and several of her colourful associates including Toss Woollaston. Her home, with its dramatic contrasts in weather and terrain, provided a plenitude of inspirations which helped develop a large body of work— mainly landscapes— and cultivate a style influenced by dramatic topography and ever-changing light.

Her work often reflects the freedom and isolation of her childhood in the Maruia Valley, but since settling in Canterbury in 2000 she has discovered  a new landscape quite different from the dense greenery of the West Coast. Her palette has warmed to capture the space and colour of this sun-filled province, and the ridged and sharp landscapes have yielded to a more impressionist style.

This period has also seen her traverse from landscapes into people, searching for something beyond the ordinary to depict, which has helped realize that countenance and posture can at times reveal an intimate, emotional human landscape.

She has been a regular competitor in regional and national art awards, and has been a finalist in the Mainland, Hope & Sons, and New Zealand Portrait Gallery awards several times as well as winning the inaugural Caruthers & Wetherall Art Award (1994). The most recent was winning the best in the exhibition 2015 at the Rangiora Art Society Annual Spring Exhibition for the painting ‘Will It Stop Hurting Mumma’.  Judged by Min Kim.   This is the third time Susan has won this award.

Her work has been exhibited throughout New Zealand and has been well received with sales to both local and overseas collectors in the USA, UK and Australia.

Susan paints from her studio at her home in North Canterbury. However, for most of 2013 she and her husband Ronan had the opportunity to live at Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park, South Canterbury. Living in the Canterbury high country has exposed Susan to a wealth of spectacular subjects which she is interpreting in her own unique style.   She is a member of the Rangiora Art Society and currently is exhibiting her work at the Artbox Gallery, Oxford Art Gallery and The Brick Mill Gallery.

All content of this website is copyright of Susan Ferguson,  2017.

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