Susan Tooke – Raising the Alarm

Explore the multi-faceted and ambitious creative impulse of Nova Scotia based artist Susan Tooke.

Susan Tooke - Raising the Alarm

Artist Profile - Susan Tooke

  • Susan Tooke lives in Mi’kma’ki, the traditional land of the Mikmaq Nation. Her home in rural Port Royal, Nova Scotia is surrounded by the Acadian forest and the Queen Anne Marsh of the Annapolis Basin.

    Focusing on environmental issues, she has developed visual symbolism for life forms impacted by the elements and layered through time. With painting as the foundation of her studio work, she also works in media arts, with current exploration creating abstracted soundscapes from field recordings.

    Tooke’s media work was selected as Beacon Projects both individually and with the collaborative team, Motion Activated (Susan Tooke, Lukas Pearse and Véronique MacKenzie) for Halifax’s Nocturne 2015, 2016 and 2017.

    Her artwork for children’s literature resulted in multiple awards including four Lillian Shepherd Memorial Awards for Excellence in Illustration and eleven published books. Susan received the prestigious Established Artist Recognition Award in 2015 in acknowledgement of artistic contribution to the province of Nova Scotia. She served as national chair of the board of Canadian Artists’ Representation/Le Front des artistes canadiens, and on the boards of CARFAC Maritimes, the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, Visual Arts Nova Scotia and the Creative Nova Scotia Leadership Council, advising the provincial government on arts policy.

    Her work is in the collections of the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, the Nova Scotia Art Bank, Parks Canada and the National Library of Canada.

    She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Virginia Commonwealth University, and completed further studies in the Master of Media Arts program at the New School in New York City.