Fine Art Painting, Seattle, WA

Statement / Biography / CV

Susan Derrick’s abstract paintings are intuitive inventions that indulge in surface pattern and texture. Her latest body of work concocts unexpected juxtapositions between geometric and organic forms. She mixes these two types of shapes to highlight their different qualities. They might compete, overwhelm, cooperate, tease, balance, or dance with each other. While painting she takes an indirect course of probing, reworking and allowing the imagery to unfold in unforeseen ways.

Susan Derrick’s paintings have evolved through her interest in urban surfaces that have a weathered, aged patina; corrosive walls and doors marked by rust, graffiti, peeling paint, and ripped billboards. Her rich surfaces develop into low relief tactile paintings by building up and sanding or scraping back into the work leaving marks, color fragments, and ghosts of imagery for the viewer to discover.

Susan Derrick’s collage-based method creates the illusion of flattened space that implies depth. She paints on watercolor paper that she cuts or tears and reassembles on wood panels. She uses opaque pigments to suggest density and physical weight. Her additive and subtractive method of working creates an effect that resembles distressed facades that show the passage of time, yet her paintings feel wholly contemporary.

Susan Derrick was born and raised in southern New York State. She earned a BFA in Painting from Alfred University, NY and worked for 10 years as an illustrator near New York City. She moved to Redmond, Washington in 1995. Susan Derrick is a 2014 Artist Trust EDGE graduate. In 2018, one of her paintings was selected for a national exhibition at MARIN MOCA Museum of Contemporary Art in California. Susan Derrick has had several solo shows and her paintings have been included in numerous group exhibitions at galleries, universities and art centers. She is an avid art book collector, photographer, backyard birder, and a life-long student of dance.


1983       Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree, Painting, Alfred University, New York

2018       Color Interactions: Theory and Practice, North Seattle College,  Seattle, WA

      Art2Life Creative Visionary Program, (Online), Painting

2014       Artist Trust EDGE Professional Development Program
2010-13  Gage Academy of Art, Seattle, WA, Painting/Drawing

2005       Kelly S. King Faux Finish Institute, Lynnwood, WA, Designer Wall Finishes

1988       State University of New York (SUNY) Purchase, Drawing/Painting
1985-86  Parsons School of Design, New York, NY, Illustration

Solo Exhibitions

2018       re:surface, Studio 103, Tashiro Kaplan Building, Seattle, WA

2016       Fragile Beauty, Ombu, Edmonds, WA

2015       Impermanence, Studio 103 Tashiro Kaplan Building, Seattle, WA

2013       Corrosion, Dusted Valley Wine and Art Gallery, Woodinville, WA

Selected Group Exhibitions

2018       MARIN MOCA Museum of Contemporary Art, Memory and Perception, National Exhibition, Novato, CA, Alan Bamberger- Curator

      Museo Gallery, Terrain: Exploring a Common Ground, Langley,WA

      Art2Life Academy International Online Exhibition, Donna Seager- Juror

      North Seattle College, Like Mother, Traveling Exhibition, Seattle, WA, Kelly Lyles- Curator

2017       ArtXchange Gallery, Like Mother, Traveling Exhibition, Seattle, WA

2016       Frederick Holmes and Company Gallery, 3 Person Exhibition, Obfuscation, Seattle, WA, Frederick Holmes and Colleen LenahanCurators

      35 LIVE: COCA Center on Contemporary Art, Seattle, WA

      Bellevue Arts Museum, Women’s Work, Women Painters of Washington, Community Education Gallery, Bellevue, WA

2015      Larson Gallery, Visual Voices, Yakima Valley College, Yakima, WA, David Lynx- Juror

     The Bemis Building, Bemis Fall Art Show, Seattle, WA

2014       Seattle Design Center, Local Beat, Evergreen Association of Fine Arts Gallery, Seattle, WA

2013       Schack Art Center, Celebration!, Women Painters of Washington, Everett, WA

2011       Northwinds Art Center, Art Port Townsend Northwest Expressions, Port Townsend, WA, Gary Faigin- Juror

      Seattle Design Center, Members Exhibition, Eastside Association of Fine Arts, Seattle, WA

2009       Kaewyn Gallery, Waterworks, Northwest Watercolor Society, Bothell, WA,  Christopher Schink- Juror

       Trilogy Golf Club, Members Exhibition, Northwest Watercolor Society, Redmond, WA,   Tom Hoffman- Juror

       Bothell Landing Park Building, LiveArts, Bothell, WA, Diane Ainsworth- Juror

2008       New Dimensions Gallery, Waterworks, Northwest Watercolor Society, Bellevue, WA,  Betsy Dillard Stroud- Juror

2007       Harbor Gallery, Waterworks, Northwest Watercolor Society, Gig Harbor, WA, Robert Burridge- Juror


2016       Betty Jo Fitzgerald Award, Women’s Work: Women Painters of Washington, Bellevue Arts Museum, Cappy Thompson- Juror

2015       Honorable Mention, Larson Gallery, Visual Voices, David Lynx- Juror

                 Studio Challenge Finalist, Kirkland Arts Center: Artbeat Auction, Kirkland, WA, Larry Metcalf- Juror

2009       Best of Show Award, Eastside Association of Fine Arts, Members Exhibition, Tom Hoffman- Juror

      Jack Richeson Award, Northwest Watercolor Society, Waterworks,  Christopher Schink- Juror

      Honorable Mention, LiveArts Bothell Exhibition, Diane Ainsworth- Juror

2008       L.A. Frames Award, Northwest Watercolor Society, Waterworks, Betsy Dillard Stroud- Juror

2007       Juror’s Award of Merit, Northwest Watercolor Society, Waterworks, Robert Burridge- Juror

1984       Two First Place Awards– Drawing and Painting, Beaux Art Finale,  The Women’s Clubs of Westchester, New York

 Curatorial Projects

2015       Artist Trust EDGE Graduate Show, Galvanize, Seattle, WA, Co-curated with Louise Hankes

     Women Painters of Washington Gallery, Black & White + One, Group Exhibition, Seattle, WA, Co-curated with Cheryl Richey


       Graymoor, Garrison, New York


2018        Madrona Love, Self-published Nature Photography Book

1983        Smithsonian Magazine- Illustration

Special Events

2016       Kirkland Arts Center, Live Auction Donating Artist

2015        Radio Interview, Art Beat- Alternative Talk 1150 KKNW with Pat Pauley

      Guest Speaker, Bellevue Arts Museum Potpourri Guild Luncheon

      Luxe Interiors + Design Magazine, Lead Artist for Fundraiser BarkART for Foster Kids, Urban Reclamations, Seattle, WA

                 Kirkland Arts Center, Live Auction Donating Artist


2015       Centrum Artist-In-Residence, Port Townsend, WA

2014       Centrum Artist-In-Residence, Port Townsend, WA

2013       Centrum Artist-In-Residence, Port Townsend, WA

Work Related Experience

2012-13  Teen Art Teacher, Redmond Studio

2007       Youth Art Teacher, Summer Camp, Redmond Studio

1984-90  Staff Illustrator at LAM Design, White Plains, New York. Package Design and Advertising for Fortune 500 Companies-Pepsi, Nestle, General Foods,  Bristol-Myers, Xerox, Seagrams, Heublein, Reader’s Digest

1983-85  Freelance Illustration

Professional Affiliations

Artist Trust

COCA Center on Contemporary Art

Kirkland Arts Center

Art2Life Academy