Susan Janow, Untitled (SJ 312), Ink on paper, 2020. Loan from Creative Growth.

Susan Janow: If I Were a Queen

September 03, 2022 - December 04, 2022

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Susan Janow approaches her drawings with a methodical and meditative focus. Beginning with an open hand-drawn grid, she meticulously fills in each shape with fine lines that resemble faintly moving curtains when complete. This process of intensive crosshatching is precise and introspective, as Janow works with unbroken focus. Her compositions never quite fill the page, leaving a span of charged negative space underneath the grid. This exhibition will feature 20 of Janow’s drawings and her video work.

A multimedia artist, Janow’s practice is expansive. She works with ink, ceramic, collage, woodwork, and textile, and she is widely recognized for her video work. Janow writes, directs, and often stars in her own short films created in the Digital Media Lab of Oakland, California’s Creative Growth Gallery. Her seminal work “Questions?” positions Janow facing the camera and looking ahead silently, while her own voiceover shifts between standard interview-like questions and personal inquiries. The viewer is left to reflect not only on their own responses, but the enigmatic motivations of the enquirer herself. Janow’s video work is in the permanent collection at the Brooklyn Museum and her work on paper is in the permanent collection of the Centre Pompidou.

Since 2003, Susan Janow has practiced at Creative Growth Art Center, a non-profit organization based in Oakland, California that advances the inclusion of artists with developmental disabilities in contemporary art and strengthens community by providing a supportive studio environment and gallery representation. For more information, visit

Support for this exhibition is provided by the Edward D. and Ione Auer Foundation.