Suzanne Anthony’s Degree Show space is the Mural Room on the ground floor of Edinburgh College of Art’s Main Building.
Working in a space of this size, Suzanne has had to consider how she bests uses it to her advantage. She says, “It’s a great space and demands monumentality. It’s meant a change of scale and a bit of thought about how to create an element of surprise.”
Suzanne has used solely unwanted and discarded materials to make her abstract sculptural forms. “I’ve used skips, the ECA Free-Use Hub and The Meadows Share [a Facebook recycling group] to find my materials. I’ve also contacted local removal companies and they’ve let me use their unwanted stuff, saving it from going to landfill.”
“The Free-Use Hub in particular has been a massive blessing. When I’m finished, a lot of what I’ve used can go back there,” she says.
Suzanne works with recycled materials because she enjoys the freedom it gives her. She says, “Working in this way means I’m less precious about materials and I can just respond to what I’ve collected. It’s an important tool for me to remain playful, resourceful and immediate.”
She continues, “I like to work directly in the studio and have built all of my work intuitively in situ. Staying out of the workshops allows me to avoid overthinking and act as I want in response to the materials and their location.”
After ECA, Suzanne would like to get involved in an artist-run space in London, where she grew up. In her fourth year, she completed a placement at Rhubaba, an artist-run organisation in Edinburgh that provides studio space for artists alongside a programme of exhibitions and events.
She hopes that working at a space like Rhubaba will build on the skills she learned while working on the committee for Canvas, the History of Art student journal based at ECA. “Combining my studies with working on Canvas and for Rhubaba, I’ve learned how to organise my time. I’ve had to learn how to get the balance between learning History of Art theory and my practice right – the pull between the life of the library and the studio – because I’m deeply invested in both.”
Suzanne chose the MA in Fine Art because it offers a combination of academic study and art practice. “I didn’t want to do anything else. Studying at ECA has been amazing, I wouldn’t change it for the world. The programme gives you an extra year to progress and my practice has developed immensely since finishing fourth year,” she says. “I’ve also loved working collectively with everyone in the studio.”