Susan Barnett

Dallas, Texas, USA

I am interested in the intersection of perception and cognition, that moment when we take what we think we know and name it. I work with simple geometric forms and mathematical systems to create visual environments that fluctuate and transform themselves. The instability of these images intrigues me; layers of images and distinct systems manage to coexist on the surface. Through my work I question the rules by which I structure my reality, my initial perceptions, memory, and the meanings I assign.

Working with geometric shapes allows me to eliminate the distraction introduced by historic (meaning-laden) content. Complexity is introduced by shifting grids and competing geometric and mathematical systems. The changing dynamic of color relationships and a systematic use of color is also an important aspect of my investigation into perception and cognition.

I question the limits of perception and rational thinking in giving meaning to our world. I flirt with what I can’t quite grasp, lingering around, hoping to draw it nearer. I find freedom and joy in those moments when the space created by color and line is still in flux, where the pattern is not quite set and the form is not yet clear and meaning still eludes me.

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