Sue Johnson

Professor of Art

Sue Johnson


Sue Johnson is a visual artist living and working in Richmond, VA and St. Mary’s City, MD. She earned a MFA in Painting and Printmaking from Columbia University, a BFA in Painting from Syracuse University magna cum laude, and studied painting in London and Florence with Syracuse University. Before coming to St. Mary’s in 1993, she was the Coordinator for Triangle Artists’ Workshop, Director of The Lincoln Center Gallery at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, and taught at the Herron School of Art/Indiana University-Purdue University in Indianapolis, Marymount Manhattan College, and Parsons School of Design. While at St. Mary’s College Johnson has served as the Steven Muller Distinguished Professor of the Arts (2003-07), and was awarded the Norton Dodge Award for Outstanding Creative and Scholarly Achievement (2006). Johnson has served as Department Chair of the Art & Art History Department (2002-06), and Coordinator of the Environmental Studies Program (2013-17). Johnson’s work has been the subject of over forty one-person exhibitions in the USA and England at venues that include the Tweed Museum of Art, Jan Cicero Gallery, Eleanor D. Wilson Museum of Hollins University, Pitt Rivers Museum at the University of Oxford, Salisbury and South Wiltshire Museum, The University of Memphis, Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Midwest Museum of American Art, Swarthmore College, Anderson Gallery, Virginia Commonwealth University, Carlton College, The Rosenbach Museum and Library, and the University of Richmond Museums. Grants include awards from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts/Mid Atlantic Foundation Fellowship, the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, Tenot Foundation and four Individual Artist Awards from the Maryland State Arts Council. Selected residency fellowships include the Arts/Industry Program, John Michael Kohler Art Center, Mac Dowell Colony, Millay Colony, Art Omi International Artist Colony, Frans Masereel Centrum, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, City of Salzburg/Salzburg Kunstlerhaus Residency Fellowship, Scuola Internazionale di Grafica Venezia, Jentel Foundation, CAMAC/Centre D’Art Marnay Art Centre, Tyrone Guthrie Centre. Professor Johnson has been awarded residential research fellowships by the American Philosophical Society and the American Antiquarian Society. In 2010-11 Johnson served as Visiting Scholar in Residence at the Centre for Medieval & Renaissance Studies in Oxford, England and has been a Visiting Artist at the American Academy in Rome in 2011 and 2015. Reviews of her work have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The New Art Examiner, and Art Papers. Her work is in numerous public collections including the Muscarelle Museum of Art, MOMA/Franklin Furnace Archive, Yale University Libraries, U.S. Embassy Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Smithsonian American Art Museum Libraries, Prudential Life Insurance Co., Bristol-Myers/Squibb, Tweed Museum of Art, Maier Museum of Art, Bucknell University, Francis J. Greenburger Foundation, among many others.

Recent and Upcoming Exhibitions:

‘Women With Vision: Masterworks from the Permanent Collection’, Muscarelle Museum of Art, The College of William & Mary, Williamsburg, VA (Feb. 10 – May 13, 2018) ‘Sue Johnson: Home of Future Things’, The University of Memphis, Martha and Robert Fogelman Galleries of Contemporary Art, Memphis, TN (Sept. 16 – Nov. 11, 2016) ‘Sue Johnson: Ready-Made Dream’, Ridderhof-Martin Galleries, University of Mary Washington, Fredericksburg, VA (Oct. 25 – Dec 2, 2018)

Honors & Awards

2011 - Tenot Foundation Fellowship, CAMAC/Centre D’Art Marnay Art Centre, France 2010-11 - Scholar-in-Residence, Centre for Medieval & Renaissance Studies, Oxford 2009 - Maryland State Arts Council, Individual Artist Award - Crafts 2008 - Maryland State Arts Council, Individual Artist Award – Works on Paper 2006 - Norton Dodge Award for Outstanding Scholarly and Creative Achievement (SMCM) 2005 - Maryland State Arts Council Individual Artist Award – Sculpture/Installation 2003-07 - Steven Muller Distinguished Professor of the Arts (rotating endowed chair) 1998 - Pollock-Krasner Foundation Fellowship 1995 - Maryland State Arts Council, Individual Artist Award - Painting 1994 - NEA Regional Fellowship in Painting/Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation Fellowship 1985 - Outstanding Faculty of the Year, Herron School of Art, I.U.P.U.I. Indianapolis, IN 1984 - New Jersey State Council on the Arts Fellowship - Mixed Media

Areas of Research Specialization

  • Foundations
  • Painting
  • Drawing

Areas of Teaching Specialization

  • Printmaking
  • Book Arts
  • Scientific Illustration


  • in Painting at Columbia University, 1981
  • in Painting - magna cum laude at Syracuse University, 1979
  • in Syracuse University in Florence, Italy at , 1978
  • in Syracuse University in conjunction with Central Saint Martin’s, London, England at , 1977-78
  • in Randolph-Macon Woman’s College at , 1975-76