For multi-media artist, Sue Murad, stillness is a way to experience rest, both in life and in art. Murad describes her work as an intuitive engagement with form, disregarding notions of usefulness, common meaning, and prescribed narratives. Much of Murad’s work operates in the territories of slippage between experimental dance, performance art, and visual art. Having the opportunity to experience her work live, Murad accesses a mindfulness with every micro-movement of her body. After reviewing her work for the Stillness Series, it was clear that Murad has successfully applied the same intention that she employs corporally to her utilization of objects.
Murad elaborates further on the concept of stillness:
“It ushers in quietness, regardless of the environment. Stillness has magnified moments of both peace and isolation. It has punctuated a work’s rhythm, and noted the finality of death. It has emphasized an inner human world and, in my installation work, has been interrupted by time and gravity.”
Through this series, The Present Tense has observed that stillness is a concept that evokes viscerally physical responses. Is this possible to achieve a similar reaction when applying this concept to an inaminate object? After looking at documentation from Murad’s installations “The Tape Room” and “OJ Disk,” I believe it is. Murad approaches these objects with a sensitivity that seems reserved for the human body. The tape is subject to the effects of gravity while the Disk of orange juice sweats from the heat. Through her experimentation, Murad turns the common objects, tape and orange juice into living beings.
Sue Murad is a multi-media artist working in visual and performing art. She teaches at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston and runs Orange, an art, design & video studio. After 4 years with the performance art band, U.V. Protection (2004-2007,) Sue was a recipient of a 2008 Massachusetts Cultural Council award in Choreography. Starting in 2012, Murad will be an Artist in Residence at Children’s Hospital Boston. She lives and works in Boston.