About the Artist

Susan RienzoWelcome to Susan Rienzo Designs: Art Quilts and Fiber Art.

  I was always attracted to bright and bold colors from the time I was young. My first memory is finger painting with bright red paint. The teacher held up my painting to the class praising it, and I was hooked. Luckily art was encouraged in my home and my prize possession was my box of crayons. I learned to sew at an early age and dreamed of becoming a fashion designer. I graduated Fashion Institute of Technology, but decided I wasn’t ready for the real world and wanted more of an education. I transferred to the University of Georgia and received my BFA in Graphic Design. My mother had grown up in Atlanta, Georgia, so the appeal of going to school in Athens, Georgia, was my adventure. I met my husband there, graduated, married, and had two children.

My decade of influence was the 60‘s: Peter Max, Pop Art, the Beatles, and the fashion designer Pucci among others. When my children were young I explored many different crafts, but It was in 1982, when I discovered quilting. I then realized I could combine my love of color, textiles, graphic design and sewing with making original quilts. I read all I could on quilting, joined quilting guilds, and took workshops. Amish quilts, of course, was a primary source of my inspiration. I met like minded creative minds and was part of the burgeoning growth of the Art Quilt. That was my road to this creative life of creating Art Quilts, I lead now.

Retiring to Florida in late 2004, I felt a renewal in my passion for color and creating original fiber art. My inspiration for themes has been the joy of living in Florida and my love of the beach. Vibrant saturated colors, textures, whimsy and visual energy has become my mark of distinction. My styles include abstract design and collage, using my palette of high quality batiks, hand-dyed cottons, commercial and joyful conversational prints. Sometimes I may work from a preconceived idea and sketch, but then I work intuitively and spontaneously to let the piece evolve to where it needs to go. I use my design wall, much like an artist uses an easel, to pin my fabric selections on the wall until a good composition, and design is achieved. Changes may still be made, but when done I will layer the design with the batting and backing and stitch on my home machine. I hope to impart the fun I am having, and share that joy in my art. I would like my art to draw the viewer in closer to view the elements of surprise, and bring a smile.