Susan Wechsler Mosaic Artis - Denver, USA

You can thank your mother for your mosaic art – explain.

 My mom has always been a big influence on my creative life.  She is an artist too at a time where she never thought she could make a living being an artist.  But she has always encouraged me.  I have a MFA from Tisch School of Art at NYU in costume design, so it was my mom’s suggestion that I mosaic dresses.

She was right, they are now my signature pieces.

Susan and mum

How do you source the dresses that are the beginnings of a piece?

 After my mom suggested I mosaic dresses, I had to find a form that would inspire me. When I saw hanging in a craft store, half of a dress in a metal form, I was inspired. I bought 50 to make a series. Because as my students can confess, they are addicting. Once you make one, you have lots of other ideas to make more. I now have them fabricated for me out of plastic by a local supplier.

Do you alter the palette but continue on a similar theme?

My creative mind works quicker than my hands do. I always have lots of creative thoughts swimming in my head. I gather my palette first from all of my china and discarded treasures in my studio. And from there I simply let go to the creative process and let the piece fly!


Discuss the storage of your source materials?

I love antiques and discarded treasures. The more unusual the more interesting they are to me. It is recycle art, bringing new meaning to something once cherished now toss aside. It is the challenge of bringing all of these textures and dimensions together into an art form that gets me excited.

 I am a very organized person, have to be to do what I do. So my studio is lined with narrow shelves and drawers full of metal bits and beads, so that I can find everything I need once I begin my process.


You have recently left your old studio and moved to a new studio.

When you were looking for a studio what were some of the special criteria that needed to be filled?

 I just sold my family house, kids went off to school & work, so now my husband and I are empty nesters- YA! We downsized and moved into the city of Denver. I have always had my studio in my home so I could raise our boys. I was now looking for an art community to be a part of. So I rent a studio in a large warehouse space in the Denver art district.

One of your series is ‘Memory Dresses’, can you explain this series?

Since I use discarded treasures to tell my visual stories, I also encourage commissioned dresses using your family history. So they are my clients “memories” which is what makes the work so meaningful.

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While another is ‘Angels’ discuss this using 2 to 3 examples.

I have angels that guide me through my life. Angels who have passed but are always with me and angels who keep me in the creative zone while I am working. I feel a deep connection with my angels which is why I create them in my work. And it is the wings that I find so beautiful.


You give many classes in the States expand on how you present them?

 I teach all over the globe because I love sharing my creative process. I am planning workshops in Australia and New Zealand for September/October 2017, so email me if you are interested in learning all of my mosaic secrets.  Everyone knows what they like and what they don’t like visually. I teach mosaics as a process so that I can help everyone be successful in creating a meaningful piece of art for themselves and finding their own creative voice. It is very empowering to me to share what I love to do.


 What is something that you have learnt from a student?

 I learn as much from my students as they learn from me. Together we build community through my classes. Once you take a class from me you are forever part of a very special group of creative souls.

 You also do online classes.

 Yes, because not everyone can afford my classes or fly to be in one of my workshops, so I have created online classes for everyone who would like to learn my techniques.

Size – what is the smallest piece, and the largest piece?

 I work very large because I have an art background. I begin with a sculptural form because my BFA is in sculpture. I love working with my hands and building substrates to mosaic, which is what makes all of my work so unique to me.

2d - Copy

 Do you take commissions?

 Of course I do! I would love to make something very special just for YOU!

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Contact details

Susan Wechsler

Susan Wechsler, Denver, USA

Interview by Deborah Blakeley, October, 2016