Current Student Susan M B Chen '20 Finalist for AXA Art Prize, in Two Exhibits this Fall

BY Audrey Deng, October 3, 2019

Current student Susan M B Chen ’20 is a finalist for the AXA Art Prize. Her painting, Waiting (2018), will be exhibited in two galleries this fall: first, the Richard Gray Gallery in Chicago Oct. 24-30, and then the New York’s Academy of Art Nov. 18-22.

Formerly known as the XL Catlin Art Prize, the AXA Art Prize shines a spotlight on the re-emergence of figurative art in the contemporary art world. According to AXA, “Over a decade the prize established a strong reputation as an insightful overview of emerging talent and has continued to build on that position of credibility in North America.” The first-place winner will receive a $10,000 cash prize, and the second-place winner will receive a $5,000 cash prize.

Art by current student Susan M B Chen

Waiting by current student Susan M B Chen ’20 is a finalist for the AXA Art Prize.

Chen grew up between Hong Kong and the United Kingdom during the Hong Kong handover, prior to moving to the United States to attend Brown University, where she received her BA Honors in Visual Arts and double major in International Relations in 2015.

Her work has been exhibited by United Kingdom Parliament, Shanghai Hosane Auction House, SPRING/BREAK Art Show, Perry & Marty Granoff Center for the Creative Arts, Brown University Investment Office and is part of private collections in several international cities.

According to her bio, Chen, as a first-generation American, surveys members of her racial community from a psychological viewpoint, as she attempts to readjust her own perspectives of looking from both the lens of an ethnic majority in one part of the world to that of a minority in another. She often uses the interior-exterior juxtaposition as a metaphor to convey themes of dissonance, duality, a search for belonging, and millennial anxieties framed by the digital world.