Susan Purdy

Susan Purdy
Monash University


I am an Australian artist working with plants and early photographic practices.
I completed two Australia Council residencies, in China, and Taiwan. The Taipei residency evolved into the project titled New Branches on an Old Tree, which continued in Australia at the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne with support from from Arts Victoria. I was included in the exhibition First Impressions – Contemporary Australian Photograms at NGV Australia, Federation Square, and The National Gallery of Australia have recently acquired my work. I teach Visual Art at Monash University.


Rosalind Atkins and Susan Purdy

anemophilous |
adjective Botany
(of a plant) wind-pollinated.

Wind-pollination (anemophily) syndrome is an adaptation that helps to separate the male and female reproductive systems of a single plant, reducing the effects of inbreeding.

Emptied out in an explosion, an expansion a
shimmer of connecting,
cast into
the dark field of sky,
wild space,
invisible  circulations of pollen
make ancient flowing journeys in the air,
travel on the anemos wind of seasons,
through atmospherics,
propelled forward in the slipstream to
join the  many particular things that fall: snow, dust, sand, carbon,
in new frontiers,
where its message,
resembling an act of faith,
is delivered and read.

Drift is collaborative project by Australian artists Rosalind Atkins and Susan Purdy, who break new ground when they cohere their visual affinities, taking plants as their central motif, and paper as their common medium and marrying the etching with the photogram.

Within a geology of dynamic activating layers; a fusion capable of reconfiguring meaning occurs. With the mind, the eye and our fingertips we push at the edges of what we know, beyond the drift of our ecological anxieties, scouting evolution and our dreams for images to express our biophilia: an emotional affinity towards other life-forms and our tender feeling for the continual metamorphosis of all things on earth.