Portfolios by Susan Keiser

Return to Issue 3 Table of Contents
A River Made of Time and Memory

Portfolio: The Last Wave By
Part of the A River Made of Time and Memory
(Note: Adobe Flash Player required to view portfolio.)


Portfolio: Fire and Ice
Part of the A River Made of Time and Memory
(Note: Adobe Flash Player required to view portfolio.)

Artist’s Statement

My parents were not much for taking pictures. The entire family archive fit in a small cardboard box: two barely started albums and a pile of photo envelopes from various drugstores. Growing up I’d spent hours studying and restudying those snapshots, looking for insights even in the badly blurred ones. Part memory, mostly invention, the stories I wove became my history.

The box sat unopened for years until a frozen pipe burst, flooding the basement of my mother’s empty house. While the ruined photos were irreplaceable, the history was my own, and the loss freed me to reimag(in)e my story on a larger scale and from a more universal point of view. The result,  A River Made of Time and Memory, is the record not of actual events, but of emotional truths, shaped and colored by years of reflection.Like all rivers, it is ever-changing. Each time I step into the flow, new images appear, which I gather into a growing series of chapters. Memories and dreams, desires and regrets, all the stories I tell myself about myself, come into focus when manifested tangibly in pictures. And through my photographs, my insights can be ordered, understood, and shared with others. A River Made of Time and Memory is a ongoing project. The images presented here are from the chapters “The Last Wave By,” and “Fire and Ice” Additional chapters can be viewed on my website. 

About the Artist


Primarily a painter and print-maker for many years, Susan returned to photography as her primary medium for making art when digital technology made it possible for artists to control working in color as easily as they could working in B&W. Her work is in a number of private collections, including Rockefeller Financial, LLC., who commissioned eleven photographs for their headquarters in Rockefeller Center.

The recipient of a Design Arts Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and a Merit Award from the Art Directors Club of New York, she has been a teaching artist at the Lincoln Center Institute in New York, and assembled a collection of handmade paper art for The Neurosciences Institute in La Jolla, CA. Her interest in public art led to a series of site-specific sculptures around the country, commissioned by public and private institutions, including the Milwaukee Art Museum, Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, and the International Design Conference at Aspen.

Susan has exhibited widely, including solo exhibitions at Soho Photo Gallery in New York and a feature on LENSCRATCH. She is a graduate of The Cooper Union and currently lives and works in Ossining, NY.


Return to Issue 3 Table of Contents
(You are invited to add to the conversation below.)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *