Sukey Bryan was born in New Jersey in 1961 and grew up in Connecticut and France. She graduated in 1983 from Yale University with a Bachelor of Arts in Fine Arts and English. She worked as a graphic designer for five years, first in New York with Vignelli Associates and then in her own free-lance design business in San Francisco. She received a Master of Fine Arts from the Maryland Institute College of Art, in Baltimore in 1990. During the next several years, working from a studio in Baltimore, Bryan made paintings that explore the life cycles and phases of existence in natural environments of Maryland and New England. Bryan received grants from the Maryland State Arts Council in 1991 and from the National Endowment for the Arts in 1993.
With the support of the N.E.A. Individual Artist Fellowship, Bryan painted a series of work based on the environments of Iceland and the Outer Hebrides of Scotland. Her interest in the volcanic nature of the Icelandic landscape led to several years of work that explores the interactions between natural elements (lava, water, gases and rock) during seismic activity.
Since moving to the San Francisco Bay Area in 1998, her work has explored aspects of the California environment including the seasonal wildfires, winter rain, the life cycle of natural grasses, and ocean tides and shallows. She has been interested in the contradictory fragility and power of nature and the interplay between elements of nature with larger forces of season and climate. In 2008, she worked as artist-in-residence at Denali National Park, Alaska. Time in this pristine National Park has lead to a two year project of paintings and prints concerning glacier environments of Denali and Prince William Sound, exploring in particular the water cycle of glaciers in ice cliffs, icebergs, melt-water flow, falls and riverbeds.
Bryan’s work has been exhibited nationally in many galleries, museums and non-profit spaces. Reviews of her work include Art in America, The Baltimore Sun, Las Vegas Weekly, and The Washington Review, and her work is held in many private and corporate collections. Bryan lives and works in Stanford, California with her husband and two sons.
In her paintings and prints, California artist, Sukey Bryan, explores the interaction and transformation of natural elements propelled by the earth’s forces including series based on volcanic environments, tsunamis, wildfires, grasslands, tides, waves, rain, snowfall and currently glacier ice and melt-water. She is interested in nature’s simultaneously regenerative and destructive cycles and the resonance with human experience. She graduated from Yale University with a B.A. in Art and English and an M.F.A. from the Maryland Institute College of Art. She received a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and was artist-in residence in Denali National Park in Alaska.