Susan Tooke has received numerous awards and grants including the prestigious Established Artist Recognition Award in 2015 in acknowledgement of the artistic contribution she has made to the province of Nova Scotia. Painting is the foundation of her studio practice which includes multi-media work in sound, video and animation. Her work is represented in the collections of the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, Nova Scotia Art Bank, TD Bank, Parks Canada and the National Library of Canada.
Focusing on environmental issues, Susan’s Groundscape series employs a symbolic language for life forms impacted by the elements and layered through time. Her Woodlands series defines Canadian wilderness and old growth forests in a sophisticated vibrant style.
Susan is also known for her work in media arts, having received a scholarship in 2014 from the Centre for Art Tapes, Halifax. Her work 3B: Backlands, Badlands, Burbs was featured as a Beacon Project in the Halifax festival Nocturne: Art at Night, in the fall of 2015. A second Beacon collaboration with her Motion Activated creative team Lukas Pearse and Véronique MacKenzie, Grain by Grain, employed projections, live drawing and dance mapped onto the Halifax Grain Elevators. In 2016, her Beacon collaboration with Lukas Pearse and Daniel O’Neill, Wild at Heart was projection mapped on City Hall. Once again, her work was featured at Nocturne 2017, with the multimedia collaboration Depths of Sorrow (with Lukas Pearse, Véronique MacKenzie).
A celebrated illustrator, her artwork for children’s literature has resulted in multiple awards including four Lillian Shepherd Memorial Awards for Excellence in Illustration and ten published books.
Past-President of Canadian Artists’ Representation/Le Front des artistes canadiens, she is an active advocate for artists’ social and economic rights.
Susan received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from Virginia Commonwealth University with further studies in the Master’s of Media Arts program at the New School in New York City.