T he figurative bronze work of Susanne Vertel incorporates both spiritual and aesthetic elements into a synthesis of personal vision that has gotten her critical acclaim from both peers and collectors. Vertel comes from a premise that the figure is a vehicle for expressing the underlying and often unconscious deeper focus of the mundane activities of everyday life.
Although her representational work occasionally makes use of the male image, her focus is often the many faces of women. From her austere Russian “Babushka” series to her graceful and aesthetic nudes, there is a thread of continuity, a going within, a peacefulness, that permeates much of her work and seems to touch an inner emotional space within the viewer.
Vertel’s work has won for her awards from prestigious New York shows and numerous commissions. A commission for a life size sculpture for the National Park Service is currently installed in Yellowstone National Park. She was honored by being invited to the White House to witness President Clinton award a smaller version of this sculpture as a lifetime achievement award to a retiring park ranger. A monumental version of her “Babushkas” was commissioned by a private collector to sit in front of a 20 ft. sculpture of Lenin which came from Red Square in Moscow, Russia.
Recently Vertel has completed a life-size bronze of J. Robert Oppenheimer for the county of Los Alamos. Vertel is also at work on a life-size image of General Leslie Groves, the military leader of the Manhattan Project.
Vertel resides in New Mexico.