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SUSAN CHOW - The Artist

Susan ChowSusan Chow is the child of Chinese immigrant parents who settled in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario. As a child she developed life long interests in tennis, reading, and drawing.

Eventually she earned an Honours degree in Biology and a Bachelor or Education degree from the University of  Toronto. She was dedicated to teaching secondary school science and art.

Like many artists, she was able to turn wholly to art only after retirement, but unlike many, had periodically interrupted her career to study fine arts – drawing, painting, design, printmaking, photography, and art history – at both the University of Calgary and the University of Ottawa. By the time she retired she had already developed a reputation in the field despite allowing the public few opportunities to view her work.

Over the last two and a half decades her paintings and prints have been seen in only several group shows, and four solo exhibitions, including one at the Art Gallery of Algoma.

Susan Chow


Her painting depicting the launch of  Roberta Bondar into space, titled "Discovery", hangs in the Ontario Science Centre, Toronto, where it is seen by approximately 10,000 students each year. She has enjoyed her ongoing involvement with students' photography and science as a judge for The Bondar Challenge.

Today Susan works from her home in the Sault and from her studio on Pine Island. In her quest to better express herself visually, she is forcing the evolution of her technique.


Her earlier paintings are meticulously realistic. One can almost feel the temperature and current of the water, the rough bark on a tree trunk, the fur of a resting feline.


The most recent works show a changing style and a return to oil paint. They explore a striking, vividly coloured impressionistic style. Less attached to realism, birch trees in white and blue stand out amidst the russets, umbers and deep greens of the fall forest. The rocky Canadian Shield and water continue to be a presence in her themes. Her paintings range in size from a 5 X 7 inch watercolour to a 30 X 80 inch acrylic on canvas.

Her long term goals include tackling the challenge of painting night scenes and finding ways to fuse art and poetry.