The backs of two paintings by Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, who regularly painted on both sides of the canvas, show violet trees and a glowing red fruit bowl. The explosive colors of Schmidt-Rottluff’s landscapes and still lifes echo the tropical radiance of Suter’s works. His 1937 canvas Blue Window hangs near one of Suter’s blue paintings framed by a window. The Brücke artists designed their own furniture and fabrics to create an interior architecture of art in their studios; Suter’s works achieve the same in the exhibition space.
They become textured, three-dimensional objects, taking painting away from the flatness of the wall and into the spaces between. They beg to be touched. Though mainly abstract, figurative elements—a dog, the balustrade of her veranda—blend in with sweeping strokes of color.
Suter could have continued her practice under the radar, as she had done for the past three decades, had it not been for a serendipitous discovery of her work in 2011. At the time, Adam Szymczyk, who was then the director of the Kunsthalle Basel, was looking to recreate a 1981 exhibition of Basel artists that she had taken part in.