Susan for Susan

May–August 2021

MOCA has commissioned collaborative arts duo Susan for Susan to create an immersive installation on Floor 3 of the Museum. Comprising existing work and newly produced sculptures, their invitation marks MOCA’s desire to engage artists whose practices bridge disciplines, particularly between design and art. Susan for Susan’s project will share Floor 3 with a newly commissioned installation by artist Athena Papadopoulos. 

Susan for Susan is the collaborative arts practice of brothers John Watts (born in 1990, lives and works in Toronto) and Kevin Watts (born in 1994, lives and works in Toronto). Locally based, the duo balances rationale with experimentation to produce functional art that exists somewhere in the space between sculpture and design. Their visual language draws from their past experiences in trades and fabrication and works to celebrate the inherent beauty of industrial materials and their fabrication methods. Whether it be a pop of colour or a subtle hint of humour, the brothers are always finding ways to imbue playfulness into their works and help humanize the industrial rigour of their objects. This dance between what is playful and what is industrial creates a tension that has come to define Susan for Susan’s work and their approach of conceptual story-telling.

In 2018, the duo was awarded “best collection” amongst emerging designers at the Toronto Interior Design Show and since then have been in group shows with Toronto gallery Erin Stump Projects and Montreal gallery Projet Pangée. Their work has been published in Interior Design Magazine, Surface Magazine, and in leading designer monographs.

Image credit: Courtesy Susan for Susan