Suzanne EllenbogenSince moving from Tucson, Arizona—her home for almost 30 years—to Denver, Colorado, Suzanne has thrown herself into the art she’s longed to create, making up for lost time along the way.

Suzanne’s always been creative, having graduated from New York State University College at Buffalo, NY with a BFA degree in Textile Design. Life happened to get in her way until NOW. She’s working full-time on her artistic pursuits.

Suzanne has many love interests—mostly in art.

She has worked in textile design and jewelry, but her true loves are ceramics and encaustic painting—although that might change in time!

Clay, taken from the earth and encaustics derived from beeswax and resin has informed her work and has guided her forward to create work inspired by the natural world.

These combined interests of clay and wax have interwoven themselves in her current work: Although separate right now she envisions a time when she merges the two mediums. But for now, she works in similar ways to create ceramic sculptures and encaustic paintings using textures, forms, patterns and experimenting with color.

Suzanne is inspired and influenced by all that surrounds her. Her work is very organic both visually and in her process’. She is discovering new forms, shapes and ideas with each new piece. In her process she says, “happy accidents occur on a daily basis and each one sends me further into my creative depths. I get lost in this work—I’m happily, contentedly spellbound”.

In a world that is full of strife, Suzanne tries not to take her art too seriously. “When I read the headlines I just want to hide, but instead, I make art that gives me pleasure.”


Blame it on Play Doh

When I start working in clay I like to focus on one of the following: sculpting, hand-building, create ceramic beads for jewelry and infrequently attempting to throw pots. My love of clay would leave me scattered otherwise!

My artwork is influenced by vibrant color, delicate texture and organic forms found in nature. Never starting with a preconceived image, I allow the clay to tell me what it wants to be. I am always surprised when the piece starts to take shape and I can see where it is going. Toward the end of the creative process each piece truly begins to develop through mark-making, embellishment and color.

Working intuitively, I see that my inspiration is derived by the physical world. The texture in a piece of barn wood, a vein in a leaf, a bird soaring above me or a butterfly surrounded by a fragrant flower may spark my next round of creativity.

My never knowing creates a flow that I become lost in.

I wonder what will happen today.

There is no right or wrong, just being.


Hot Mess

Encaustic is a painting method that uses melted beeswax. Using pigments and oil paints to create a color palette in wax, this ancient medium of fusing layers has many effects. There are so many paths to follow, variations and combinations that the artistic outcomes are endless.

My new-found love for encaustics started by watching a demonstration of the process. I thought that I would combine this technique with my ceramics but found that each of these mediums are standing alone at the present. I imagine at some time in the future I will have an aha moment and these two loves of mine will comingle. In the meantime…

When I begin a new painting, I’m never sure how it’ll turn out; trusting it will create itself – with my help of course. I play with texture, patterns and color; discovering innovative ideas with each new creation. I can include paper, picture, plants parts, and other media I pick up along the way.

Encaustic painting gives me the freedom to be “in the moment”. One mark becomes another, one layer informs the next, construct, destruct, it all makes sense in the present. Its unpredictability helps me to let go of preconceived outcomes.

My bee series is inspired by the beauty of the wax itself, how worker bees are such multitaskers, females of course! and how critical bees are to pollination, the continuium of bountiful harvests and a healthy environment.

My graffiti series on the other hand is inspired by the art on freight trains that I see as I frequently ride my bicycle around Golden. I am always looking for interesting composition as the cars are constantly changing.

My abstracts keep me in a blissful state where I simply get to play with for play with form and color.

The nature of the hot wax and the flame of my torch captivates me. It makes me feel the magic of the medium and keeps me in that blissful state of flow and creativity.