Installation view, Vivian Suter, the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston, 2019. Photo by Mel Taing. © Vivian Suter
Vivian Suter (b. 1949, Buenos Aires, Argentina) works in close partnership with the natural environment surrounding her home and studio in Panajachel, Guatemala. Her method often involves moving her canvases between the indoors and outdoors and exposing them to the climate in order to allow nature to commingle with her broadly painted swaths of vivid color. Inspired by the surrounding vegetation and landscape, Suter’s gestural compositions work in concert with rainfall and mud puddles, with the light that passes between branches and the animals in the forest. A place of tremendous beauty and plant and animal life as well as the rich, indigenous Mayan culture, Panajachel and the area around Lake Atitlán has also witnessed countless disruptions throughout history, from active volcanoes and numerous floods to Spanish colonization and a thirty-six-year civil war that ended in 1996. This installation of layered and suspended canvases invites visitors to discover her unique dialogue with imagined and natural worlds.