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About Susan Gilbert Harvey

Susan Gilbert Harvey is a visual artist and writer from Rome, Georgia. She graduated in art history from Hollins College, Virginia, and studied advanced design with Virginia Dudley at Shorter College in Rome, Georgia.

In 1979 Harvey began creating sculpture from found objects and household implements. In Washington, DC, she created assemblage-portraits of powerful men in American society. This show, "Capital Profiles," prompted Jo Ann Lewis of The Washington Post to call Harvey "a master of the visual double-entendre." Harvey's work explored women’s issues in environments such as "Silver Shackles and Gilded Cages."

In 1985 Harvey created "Standing Ovation," the annual Vernal Equinox Egg Balance in Rome, Georgia. Her interest in seasonal rituals has inspired the construction of large sundials and labyrinths with the appearance of costumed characters ("The Dotty Birds") for auspicious solar events.

Susan Harvey was the first visual artist chosen by the Georgia Council for the Arts for the Georgia Touring Roster; she received Individual Artist Grants from the GCA for the exhibits "Blood Root" and "The Dew Sweeper." She was the 1995 Artist of the Year for the Rome Area Council for the Arts. In 1997 she received a "Women in the Visual Arts Award" from the Georgia Commission on Women. Susan Harvey presented a thirty-year retrospective of her sculpture at the Moon Gallery of Berry College, Mt. Berry, Georgia in 1999. She received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Rome Area Council for the Arts in 2007.

In 2005 Susan Gilbert Harvey published a book about her great-aunt, Anna McNulty Lester, a nineteenth-century artist from Rome, Georgia. Using Anna's letters and her own experiences in Paris, Harvey told a layered story of two artists in two centuries. The book, "Tea with Sister Anna: a Paris journal" celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Hollins Abroad-Paris program of Hollins University. In September 2005 Harvey conducted a walking tour of Anna Lester's Paris neighborhood as part of the Hollins reunion.

In 2010, Harvey published "Postmarks: the summers of  '98"--a prequel to "Tea with Sister Anna: a Paris journal."

In her visual narrative "RÔLE CALL," Harvey portrays the classic "Southern Belle" who is mysteriously transformed into the mighty "Junk Woman." Other characters in this autobiographical myth include "Monk Woman," "Florence Day and Nightingale," and "The Lunatic Moth." The 25th anniversary edition of ROLE CALL was released on DVD in 2013, combined with "Dancing in the Crossroads," a documentary by Brian S. Armstrong about Harvey's life as an artist.

 

Miss Verna Equinox

Mockingbird 1983

Junk Woman at Washington Monument

Lunatic Moth at Empire State Bldg.

Susan in garden of Reid Hall, Paris

Photo credits: Owen Riley, F. Noreene Wells,
Mary Beaver, David Harvey
 

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