Bio

Susana Amundaraín is a Venezuelan-born American artist. She has exhibited nationally and internationally in numerous solo and group exhibitions. Amundaraín’s work is represented in museums in South America and the United States, as well as in many private and corporate collections, such as PepsiCO, ALCOA, and Minitab.

Her paintings reflect the veiled mysteries and lights of uncharted territories, like those found in the rain forests and mesa mountains (tepuys) of her home country. She was also enchanted by visual poetry and text, which took her to the theatrical space as scenic designer and librettist.

She generally builds her paintings through a multiple layering of color transparencies and eroded surfaces, in a balance between a structured space and a formless atmosphere. Her media includes acrylic and collage on canvas and paper, installations, scenic designs and text.

In 1992 Dr. Phyllis Tuchman wrote a critical essay of her work based on twelve years of pictorial development. Here she observed: “Susana Amundaraín’s luminous, layered abstractions are beautiful and profound. With them this Venezuelan artist simultaneously addresses aesthetic as well as philosophical issues (…) Amundaraín has almost always made work that is non-representational. For her this is a commitment, not a fad. ”

Her production works include Explosión de una Memoria (1994) a painting-installation at the Museo de Bellas Artes de Caracas, based on a text by Heiner Müller, with environmental sound by husband, Efraín Amaya. In 1999, she collaborates with her daughter, Vanessa Briceño (filmmaker), Efraín Amaya (composer) and Carol Ciavonne (co-writer of lyrics) to create Clepsydra, a multimedia operatic performance. This was premiered as part of Pittsburgh’s celebrations of the new millennium. As a librettist, she also created the story and text for a children’s opera, Phantasmagorilla? No! Phantasmagoria, with music by Efraín Amaya, premiering in 2007 by Opera Theater of Pittsburgh.

Amundaraín has also developed set designs for plays staged by Grupo Theja in Venezuela, including the world-premiered piece Autorretrato de Artista con Barba y Pumpá by José Ignacio Cabrujas, under the direction of José Simón Escalona, and for choreographer and director André Koslowski, with TanzTheater André Koslowski in Pennsylvania, which premiered their most recent work in 2014.

Ms. Amundaraín holds a Master of Fine Arts degree, with emphasis in painting and performance art from the University of Denver in Colorado. She has also been a Visiting Scholar in Performance Studies at the Tisch School of the Arts, in NYU, New York City. She currently lives and works in Philadelphia, PA.