SCULPTOR ON CAMPUS
Susannah Israel was the 7th artist selected for CSUB’s Sculpture- on-Campus Program. The Program invites an artist each year to produce an outdoor sculpture/ installation to be sited on the California State University, Bakersfield campus. 2020 marks the 32nd year of Sculpture on Campus.
Israel built and fired a group of 5 lifesize figures with ceremonial masks, ritual objects and animal companions, working in the Sculpture Department yard in order to interact with staff, students and faculty. She demonstrated her construction techniques, discussed content and surface, and took part in classes and events in the community during this three-week period. She learned about the history of the city and its people, and these narratives and elements informed the work as well. The artist says, "Work made and installed in public spaces needs to embody and respond to that space and those people." When the time came to install the completed piece, the site was chosen by the Native American students, who felt that the work captured important themes in their cultural history: "A tremendous honor," says the artist.