UNC Art Auction

Just delivered this work to Light Art + Design, Chapel Hill/Carrboro for the auction tomorrow eve in support of UNC Art Dept. M.F.A. Students. I painted this last summer in Spello, Italy, “Notificazione”, Gouache on found paper, 2016.

The auction is tomorrow. Here is a link. 

I saw many wonderful pieces by UNC M.F.A. students and area artists when I dropped this off. Hope you can make it.


Repossessing Border Space

Congrats Markus Heide on your new publication Repossessing Border Space: Security Practice in North American Border Art.

“How do artists approach topics such as national border security, undocumented
immigration, and border violence? What kind of engaged aestetics do they develop? How
are discourses of security and insecurity – and material manifestations thereof – addressed
in works of installation and performance art located at the US–Mexico and the US–Canada
borders? My discussion will concentrate on three pieces by contemporary US-based artists:
Non-Sign II, a sculpture designed by Annie Han and Daniel Mihalyo (known as the Lead
Pencil Studio), The U.S.–Mexico Anti-Archive by photographer and installation artist Susan Harbage Page, and the Transborder Immigrant Tool (TBT) by Ricardo Dominguez and The
Electronic Disturbance Theater.”
Excerpt from Repossessing Border Space: Security Practice in North American Border Art by Markus Heide. Comparative American Studies: An International Journal.

This paper discusses how the visual arts engage in representing
border crossing experiences and, more specifically, how art interrupts
border security practices and their rituals. After introducing the history
of North American border art and different approaches to issues of
border crossing, the paper will concentrate on specific works. It argues
that the selected works of art perform interventions that confront the
public with the borderlands as a place of violence and death. At the
same time, artists are shown to employ different artistic strategies
of symbolically re-possessing the borderlands for undocumented
migrants who – when crossing it – experienced it as an existential

New Publication – Disability and Art History: Interdisciplinary Disability Studies

Happy to see this new book out and available from Routledge.
Disability and Art History: Interdisciplinary Disability Studies edited by Ann Millett-Gallant and Elizabeth Howie. Chapter 1 starts with an essay by Ann Millett-Gallant about my photography. Artists and Muses, “Peter’s World” and other photographs by Susan Harbage Page.

Thank you Ann Millett Gallant and Elizabeth Howie. Can’t wait to read the whole thing.

Find it here on Amazon.

Selections from the Photography Collection

Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University

So pleased to walk into the Nasher Museum of Art and see my work included in this collection exhibition. The image below is from the “Involuntary Memories” series which I made while I was in residence at the Camargo Foundation in Cassis, France (2002). This particular image (below) was made on a short journey to Venice with my son Walker who was ten at the time. At that time I used an old Polaroid camera with positive/negative film. I carried a plastic peanut butter jar with me everywhere to stash the wet negatives in until I arrived back at the hotel room at the end of the day. I also sometimes (as you can see in this image) over processed and cooked the negatives to add an intentional layer of destruction to the images so the viewer would feel they were looking back through time.

There is also an amazing Robert Doisneau photograph in this exhibition. I remember pouring over his work in High School.

Susan Harbage Page


 Exhibitions / Selections from the Photography Collection

 On view May 28, 2016 – January 22, 2017

 The Nasher Museum presents Selections from the Photography Collection, as part of  The Collection Galleries. Drawn from the Nasher Museum’s collection, this installation presents 160 years of photographic history and includes several recent and significant gifts. The earliest works are two portraits from the 1840s by the pioneering Scottish duo, David Octavius Hill and Robert Adamson, which were some of the first paper photographic prints made from negatives. Throughout the 19th century, the nascent medium grew to include still life, documentary travel and landscape subjects, represented here in works by Peter Henry Emerson, Adolphe Braun and Ferdinand Finsterlin.

In the first half of the 20th century, photography underwent a radical transformation as artists embraced more modern approaches to the medium. Portraiture remained important, as seen in Ansel Adams’s informal double portrait of the artist Georgia O’Keeffe and Orville Cox, as well as in the keepsake photos of everyday people by small-town Arkansas photographer, Mike Disfarmer. Beginning in the 1940s, innovative practitioners such as Harry Callahan and Aaron Siskind undertook photographic experiments with abstraction, concurrent with those in painting, while documentarians, such as French photographer Robert Doisneau, used the camera to capture candid scenes of urban street life.


Seeing|Saying:Images and Words at Davidson College

Here’s an image form the exhibition Seeing|Saying: Images and Words at Davidson College.
My work from the “Regola Series” is on the left, Shirin Neshat’s work is in the middle and José Parlá’s work is on the right.

I had a wonderful time with the Curator Van E. Hilliard, Gallery Director Lia Newman, and artists Bethany Collins and Andrea Eis this week.

On October 20 at 6pm I presented a gallery talk at the opening on my work form the “Regola Series”

Here’s Lia Newman’s introduction to my work.
The title for Page’s series, Regola – in English, “rule” – is derived from the text in one of the found books the artist uses as her substrate in which a list of rules for Capistrano Friars was printed in 1827. For Page, who has spent much of her career creating artwork exploring race, surveillance, and militarized borders, rules are worth considering: “rules of the game, exceptions to the rule, how we voluntarily regulate ourselves, and how others regulate us.”

Page’s marks may be likened to palimpsest or marginalia. She works on top of pre-existing printed and handwritten texts. The artist notes that, historically, text has been considered masculine, while the marks she makes – drawings, handwritten errand lists, and hand-drawn stitches denoting Italian merletti or lacework – is considered feminine. Page overlaps, changes, adds to, crosses out, and confirms the marks previously made. This seems particularly poignant when she works, for example, atop a Napoleonic tax ledger listing the monetary value or worth of various individuals. Her process both unmakes and rewrites history, creating a new kind of truth.

The show is up till December 9 at the Van Every/Smith Galleries at Davidson College

It is packed full of evocative, thoughtful and powerful work by 18 artists including:
Shimon Attie, John Baldessari, Mark Bradford, Cris Bruch, Andrea Eis, Teresita Fernández, Howard Finster, Christian Marclay, Shirin Neshat, Dennis Oppenheim, Susan Harbage Page, José Parlá, Dan Perjovschi, Raymond Pettibon, Santiago Sierra, Hank Willis Thomas, and David Wojnarowicz

A strict binary has long existed between the contrasting effects of words and images. Words have been thought to be foundational, while images have been considered subordinate.  Words have been valued as rhetorically primary, while images have been thought of as illustrative. But such bifurcation seems to artists and writers alike both constraining and unrealistic. How might the communicative and aesthetic status of words and images be profitably studied together? How do images and texts cooperate in single works of art as modalities in tension or unison? Seeing|Saying: Images and Words assembles important contemporary works that experiment with this combination of words and images from 18 artists: Shimon Attie, John Baldessari, Mark Bradford, Cris Bruch, Andrea Eis, Teresita Fernández, Howard Finster, Christian Marclay, Shirin Neshat, Dennis Oppenheim, Susan Harbage Page, José Parlá, Dan Perjovschi, Raymond Pettibon, Santiago Sierra, Hank Willis Thomas, and David Wojnarowicz in the Van Every Gallery, and Bethany Collins in the Smith Gallery. The works presented in the exhibition invite us to question the image-word divide, and remind us of our current saturation—digitally and materially—in images with words.
There will be two public lectures accompanying this exhibition. W. J. T. Mitchell, a leading theorist of visual representation, will speak Thursday, November 3 at 7:00pm in the Lilly Family Gallery, Chambers Building, at Davidson College. Scholar, art critic, and graphic novelist Nick Sousanis will speak on Thursday, November 10 at 7pm at Semans Lecture Hall, Belk Visual Arts Center, also at Davidson. Sousanis’ artwork will be on display from October 20 – December 9 in the Spencer Lobby of Chambers Building.

Southern Cultures – I Never Believed in the Perfect Mother

 Dorothy Allison with artwork by Susan Harbage Page

Read the whole interview HERE.

The images are from my Women Waiting Series, Rust on reprinted found photographs. Inspired in part by Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s, “The Yellow Wallpaper.”

“So I look at my life as a radical feminist and the
thing I find most horrifying is the lack of compassion
that we have shown in our politics. The one thing I
learned deeply from Grace Paley was that the core of
politics is compassion, and that if you don’t have it,
you’ve screwed up in unforgivable ways. And if you do
have it? You can screw up and still [succeed], because
to have behaved with compassion gives you a position
from which you can reach people. So far, so good with
my kid. Compassion helps.”
Dorothy Allison