Playing with light, fibres and secrets – Austrian felt artist Susanne Weber creates poetic felt paintings from wool of numerous sheep breeds, plant fibres and tussah silk.
Susanne is a studied biologist and has her own medical translation business. She started felting in 2014 on a cold winter morning all alone in her bathroom, with just a book for reference, and was instantly hooked.
Her approach is the fusion of Crafts (felting is an ancient textile process, believed to be the oldest form in existence), and Arts. In this context, fibers can be defined as a painting medium, complying with many of the rules relating to Visual Arts. Based on Susanne‘s admiration for Monet and Turner and their use of light, capturing the light is of paramount importance in her work. The paintings mostly have a little fairytale or mystic touch. Susanne says: ‘Everyday life has become so overloaded with serious stuff and awareness-raising, thus people who look at my art are invited to take a little break from all this, let their fantasy flow, and just enjoy, without dealing with everyday dullness, personal messages or problems and political statements. Creating fills me with utter happiness and I want this to show.‘
Susanne is still enhancing her skills by taking live and online classes in felting, drawing and painting with worldwide renowned artists from Germany, Austria, the United Kingdom, and Australia.
Susanne like experimenting with unusual fibers and materials from stainless steel to Kozo bark and gold leaf. Using violence-free materials is a vital issue, and processing wool from raw fleece to hand-dyed 'painting' material has become increasingly important to her.
Sometimes pictures emerge from unprocessed fleeces and tell their own story – for this reason any visible bits of vegetable matter are not unwanted, but highly desirable and part of the painting.
Former projects comprise works inspired by the beautiful Art Nouveau glass windows, animals and landscapes, and at present the focus is on the human face and figure.
Since 2016, Susanne has been co-organizer of the Annual Vienna Felting Festival.
Susanne's felt paintings are constantly appearing in magazines and exhibitions, and in Autumn 2017 she was one of 6 artists shortlisted based on points out of 2000+ entries in the Wraptious Design Competition, UK.
From September to November 2018, the ‘Polyphone Oikos‘ in the City of Vienna, Austria, hosted her first solo exhibition ‘…mit Wolle gemalt‘.
In 2019, 'You are Me‘ was selected for #BeJane – an exclusive charity exhibition and auction of international artwork in Vienna to mark the 85th birthday of Dr. Jane Goodall.
November 2020, the piece 'Summertime' won the Best in Show Award in the exhibition 'I love...' hosted by Gallery Ring.
The next solo exhibition ‘A Dream of Light and Fibres‘ will take place in June 2021 at the Textile Art Berlin.