Unedited conversations between artist in a productive critique  discovering  thesis and processes behind the work.








DOMINIK:  ‪Hello Olivia‬‬


RAMOS:  ‪Hi Suzy, thank you for joining me‬‬


Thank you‬‬


‪let's talk about your latest exhibition "To Hell and Back"‬‬




do you have a specific definition of Hell?‬‬


or rather, a personal one


Coming in hot!  OK, yes I do.


Beatrice: To Hell and Back, is a work of emotional autobiography.  I consider it Hell On Earth, to been seen and heard solely as a reflection of another's psyche.‬‬


so let me bounce this back and see if i understood...


Hell, from your experience, is to mirror someone else's image of you?‬‬


What I would say is, to be defined beatific, as Dante assigned Beatrice solely for reflecting back what the other feels and believes about themselves, is hell on earth. It is a base human emotion to desire to be seen, heard and appreciated four ourselves.‬‬


‪in a way, to be over consumed, attached, dependent on other people's opinion of you - is hell on earth?


please correct me if i'm wrong - just want to get it right


No.  That is not what I said.


It is a base human desire to be appreciated for who we are.‬‬


yes, a natural instinct for social desires


what makes it hell? the exaggeration of this instinct?


I am very concerned that you are not understanding me.


There is no exaggeration, the desire to be seen and heard for who one is, is a basic human emotion.‬‬


‪don't be concerned - I agree that we have an intrinsic desire to exist and to be acknowledge for this existence‬‬


sending the artist statement from Beatrice: To Hell and Back, for your review.‬‬


‪I have read the artist statement‬‬


‪Thank you.  May we move onto the new question‬‬


you mention "one will shed the invisible chains of hell"‬‬


Yes, I did. ‬‬


‪is this in a way relating to the karmic cycle?‬‬


It is my experience that throughout one's life, we each make choices on the value of expectations that have been placed upon us or that we have  chosen for ourselves.  It is only through asking the very tough questions of ones' self that we may chose path forward.‬‬


‪I agree. In away, hell on earth is the shackles of expectations that end up being illusions because in reality we are free of them.


therefore - if we can agree on that - we can agree that hell on earth is a state of mind


would you agree?




We seem to have a disconnect, you and I.


May we please move onto the new question.‬‬


I should explain, this is not an interview, it is a conversation


i think it is wonderful that we don't agree


if you rather talk about another series, i am happy to


how about "Hateful Love"



Suzy Kellems Dominik

FUCK YOU, 2015

Mixed Media

Classic C print, Plexi glass mounted

16 x 16 in.

‪I am thrilled to talk about Beatrice: To Hell and Back, it is rich with conversational topics.‬‬


‪i agree... let's continue then‬‬


The trio of installations is a connected body of works focusing on human interactions.‬‬


what kind of human interactions?‬‬


Female, Male, explore love, hope and desire.‬‬



‪can you describe how these interactions are manifested in the work?‬‬


My work is multi-sensory, integrating sculpture, photographic image, written and spoken work, light, scent, and layered soundtrack.  I beauty-wrap the extremely base message.  It is a magical moment when the art viewed understands what they are seeing is and hearing and are drawn to take the work as their own.


My work is that moment, like a short story, a snapshot in time where I ask the viewer to ask some very difficult questions of themselves. ‬‬


‪give me an example of those questions.‬‬


The role expectations play in one's life, the subversive nature of "man" and the quest to be valued for one's self and ultimately, what is one's role in ones life.‬‬


and questioning love, hope and desire‬‬


‪i like the thought that when our life is over, all that matter is if we discovered who we were - which seems to be the opposite of being ruled by expectations - don't you think?‬‬


My thoughts are that to discover who one is at the end of life is a travesty.  It is my believe that one goes on after death by how we affected those around us during our lives.


Deathbed epiphanies are too little to late.


yes - in fact there is a life-long study of Dr. Raymond Moody on near-death experiences that expose thousands of stories in which people left their bodies and ultimately got to a screen showing every single moment lived from the eyes of the people who were there.


when i share that with some people their reaction is "oh no"


but it goes to show that you are on to something and it has everything to do with how "we are of service" to others and to the planet that is hosting our existence


so then i ask of you, since you mention the possibility of there being more lives, how would you describe hell?


I did not say that I believe that there are more lives. I have already described hell on earth no need to drop below.‬‬


‪i must have misunderstood


in your artist statement you say "in this incarnation..." wouldn't that lead to believe that there are more?‬‬


‪I used the word incarnation as, in my telling of...‬‬


got it‬‬


tell me more about Hateful Love



Suzy Kellems Dominik

I WIN, 2015

Mixed Media

Classic C print, Plexi glass mounted

16 x 16 in.


Hateful Love, is the moment when love and hate morph into something more glorious and grotesque than simple love.


isn't hate and love the inverse of each other?‬‬


‪They are each, two sides of a whole emotion.‬‬


you are suggesting we can love and hate at the same time‬‬


I am suggesting the opposite.‬‬


‪so you are suggesting we either love or we hate but not both‬‬


Sorry mis spoke.  Yes, we can love and hate at the same time.


Adulthood is complicated, convoluted and oftentimes messy and therefore all the more glorious for it.‬‬


so love is an intense feeling of deep affection‬‬


and hate an intense or passionate dislike


i can't argue against that - or the ability to feel both


when you refer to love - are you including being in love?


or just love?


‪I would say that humans are capable of complicated and diametrically opposite emotions in real time and that magic is ofttimes created in those moments.


We, humans, are astounding emotional beings.‬‬