Tuesday, October 3, 2017

The end of an era...
Papermaking Equipment for sale

I am reformatting my basement to be an extension of the studio space 
upstairs.  I need space for assembly assistance.  In order to create
a clean, clear space, I am selling the papermaking equipment.

I am selling a Lee S. Macdonald 2 pound Hydra Hollander Beater.  It
has a fiberglass basin and a winch.  It has been a marvelous tool and
is still in excellent working order.

The price is FIRM $3000.And you need to haul it...BUT, as an
incentive, It will come with quite a stack of half-stuff and linters:
unbleached abaca, raw and half-stuff cotton, black denim raw and
half-stuff, flax in various forms and a few bits and pieces.  Plenty
to get started with.

call 612-722-2324 or email susanhensel@yahoo.com

Thursday, June 1, 2017

June doings! Red Garage and Prøve Gallery

I will be exhibiting  in NEEDLEWORK: Rethinking Vulnerability and Resistance,  at Prøve Gallery 21 N Lake Ave, Duluth, opening reception June 9, 7-10pm.  The gallery is generally open Thursday-Saturday, 4-7pm. I had hoped to make it up for the reception, but it's not looking likely!  Darn!  Please go see it, support this artists' collective! Take a well deserved mini-vacation! The show runs 6/9-7/15/17.

I am pleased to have the opportunity to show the complete series EROTICA/AQUATICA  and a CHEESE BOX OF VULVAS. These are digital embroidery pieces, designed in the computer, layer by layer and stitch by stitch then output to one of my embroidery machines. 


I am also pleased to invite you to the opening reception of CRAFT,  June 16, 7-10pm, at Red Garage Studio, 3640 Garfield Ave S, Minneapolis, Minnesota.  I will be exhibiting a range of brand new embroidery work: ORGANELLES series and SCATTER, a free standing lace installation.  

ORGANELLES grew out of the EROTICA/AQUATICA series being exhibited at Prøve Gallery this month.  Much like Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop, digital embroideries are developed as layers of discrete objects.  As I was stitching out the lace pieces for EROTICA/AQUATICA, I would notice attractive forms emerge as the stitching proceeded. This led me to experiment with deconstructing the designs,exploding them, and stitching the new designs out on paper. Further experiments...and accidents...led to hand coloring the designs from the back!

SCATTER grew out of a failed embroidery.  A few months ago I hosted a group from the Textile Center for an evening studio visit and reception.  I demonstrated the design and stitch-out of a simple lace bookmark. Free standing lace embroidery is stitched out on water soluble stabilizer, essentially a sheet of starch.  When I washed out the starch, one section of the design did not hold together.  I balled it up and left it on the ironing board.  The next morning I discovered this  tiny, now 3-d, object on the ironing board...Eureka!  What if I stitched out basic squares of lace and formed them over tubes? Come the results and see me at the opening reception;-)

The show runs: June 16-25.   Hours are : 
  • Thursdays & Fridays 3:00-7:00 pm
  • Saturday & Sundays noon-4:00 pm
  • Other times by appointment or happenstance.→ If the door is open you are welcome to come on in!


Add caption

Friday, April 28, 2017

How to Cope with COPA?

COPA= Corcoran and Powderhorn Artists
1st Annual COPA Artcrawl= Saturday, May 6, 9-5

What's to cope with?  The hardest part is deciding where to start!  

The COPA Artcrawl intentionally coincides with the Spring opening of the Midtown Farmers Market starting with foodtrucks at 8am.  SO come to Lake St E & 22nd Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55407 and have a food truck breakfast.

Then, on to the Artcrawl!  Get the map.http://copa-artcrawl.com/2017/04/18/map/

See a preview from most of the artists at http://www.copa-artcrawl.com

And here is a list of the artists and groups participating with as many of their websites as I could find:

Vendor Name
Art Crawl Location
Brief Description of Product
1.     Ecoquirky-https://www.etsy.com/shop/ecoquirkyGARBAGE/
3148 22nd Ave. S.
Vegan leather upcycled handmade jewelry
2.     Marcus Larson
3450 Longfellow Ave.
Nature-inspired original acrylic paintings
3.     Sonia Meade

3328 24th Ave. S. 
A combination of painting, sculpture and textiles using found objects as well as fabric and paint
4.     Sara Stamschror-Lott- https://www.instagram.com/ladydextergoesrogue/?hl=en
3148 22nd Ave. S
Repurposed materials made into wearable art, accessories, and jewels
5.     CB Jewelry Design- https://www.etsy.com/shop/CBJewelryDesign?ref=shop_sugg
3525 22nd Ave. S.
Unique jewelry using beads, semi-precious gem stones, & embossed metals
6.     Susan Hensel-www.susanhenselprojects.com
3441 Cedar Ave. S.
Hand-dyed wool and machine embroidery for exhibition
7.     Sreekishen Nair- http://artsree.com/
3541 19th Ave. S.
Carved wood, textiles, painting, photography, and print with ecological themes
8.     Chris Sutton
3541 19th Ave. S.
Found-object construction, macramé, and eco-friendly sculpture
9.     Rose & Pentagram Design- http://www.historicgames.com/
2229 E. 34th St.
Celtic-inspired designs on boxes, tables, and game boards
10.  Therese Krupp-https://www.saatchiart.com/account/profile/199995
3450 Longfellow 
Sculptural jewelry including big dangle earrings and necklaces
11.  Fortress of the Arts-http://www.mnartists.org/angela-maki-jones
3401 Chicago Ave. S.
Gallery and shared studio space featuring ceramics, paintings, and sculpture
12.  Patty’s Pottery

3600 15th Ave. S.
Bright, colorful ottery featuring Celtic, geometric, and floral designs
13.  The White Page- http://the-white-page.org/

3400 Cedar Ave. S.
Studio, residency program, and gallery space in South Minneapolis
14.  Lester Batiste

3441 Longfellow Ave. S.
Chicago native writer will give public readings at 12-12:30 and 4:30-5 (enter backyard through gate on right side of house)
15.  Crochet by Mari- https://www.facebook.com/CrochetbyMari/

3512 26th Ave. S.
Crocheted gift items
16.  HAIR and NAILS- https://hairandnailsart.com/

2222 ½ E. 35th St.
Contemporary art gallery featuring live dance performances by Hijack & Kevin Kirsch

 Come see us at COPA Artcrawl while we are still a modest size!

And why not stick around in the neighborhood for another day?  43rd annual MAYDAY PARADE!  May 7, 2017

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Reading about ageing and art

When I wrote the last blog post, my arthritis was acting up fiercely!  probably due to the wild weather swings we were experiencing here in Minnesota as spring was trying to wrest itself out of the grip of winter!  It is always a fierce struggle here followed by a nature's ecstasy of reproduction:  Spring!  Forsythia are nearly done, magnolias are blooming and carpets of green are everywhere.  Birds are frantically dancing mating dances, building nests or brooding clutches of eggs.  I got buzzed by my first spring bee today!

I am reading about ageing as an artist.  Thinking about what that means.  Currently I am reading a book: Strategies for Older Serious Artists by Eric Rudd.  I have read his work before and found it usefully mind stretching.  He has a very definite point of view, a speedy style of writing, and thinks outside the usual boxes found in art-business manuals.

Also of note is GYST-ink.com.  They have a database developed specifically for artists and a plethora of free articles. Their article on aging leans toward fighting ageism and organizing for public visibility and support. https://www.gyst-ink.com/aging/

The Creating a Living Legacy program of the Joan Mitchell Foundation is worth reading.  I refer to their free manual as I catalog my artwork and archive.

I haven't read this one yet : An Artists Guide to Estate Planning.  It's free.

These articles, and others, deal with the specific needs of artists as they age...from very different points of view.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Are You An Ageing, Driven, Ambitious Artist?


I have been thinking a lot about age lately.  I keep making art...lots of it.  I keep reaching for grants, exhibitions and collections.  Lots of them.  I have a success rate...which includes some "yes" responses and a lot of "no" responses: the usual.

And my body, in my later sixties, seems to be edging toward various, normal fragilities: painfully creaky joints, a certain tippiness, and, of course, certain memory issues.  Nothing unusual nor even alarming there either.

But, I wonder...what will the next few years bring?


Looking ahead, I am realizing I will need more help in the studio.  Not yet...I get by with the help I have from Danielle and Dale, more or less one day a week.  They help with administrative, brainstorming and larger builds and shipments.  But it is time to think ahead.

I wonder if there are ways that older, driven, ambitious artists can organize to assist and support one another? Could we share studio assistants? Could we share skill sets?

What do you think?  Are you a driven, ambitious artist wondering about how you will handle ageing in the studio?  If so... let's begin talking.  Surely there are a lot of us around this town.

Monday, March 6, 2017

Oh Judy, Judy, Judy!!!!

This piece, Judy Chicago, will be shown, with work of other Textile Center artists, at the Minneapolis/St. Paul Airport in a new display case on concourse E8.  

This is a digital machine embroidery piece that began as a color study.  I wanted to see what effect changing the color base had on the look of the embroidery.  Each element has exactly the same design with the same thread colors.  The subtle rainbow effect is from the different quilting calico colors.  I played with the elements, lining them up, placing them on a grid and finally in a circle.  As soon as I tried the circle, I knew it was a portrait of the artist Judy Chicago whose first memoir is titled Through the Flower. Follow the link and it will become clear to you;-)

The exhibit will hang March 20 and remain through the end of July.  So, if you fly out of concourse E, watch for the fiber artists of Minnesota.

Many thanks to Kraig Thayer Rasmussen of the Textile Center for thinking of me.  Follow the link to see his paintings.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017


I am pleased to show you photographs of my solo show in the Wiseman at Rogue Community College in Grants Pass, Oregon.  I sent them 10 boxes!  I am so pleased with their installation of two solid years of work.