Susan Loy

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Susan Loy
Susan Loy with Love is Patient Literary Calligraphy print 2009.jpg
Artist, calligrapher and author Susan Loy pictured with framed Literary Calligraphy print "Love is Patient" 2009
Born February 26, 1951
Nationality United States
Education Art history and literature
Known for Watercolor painting and calligraphy using steel pens and brushes
Website -->

Susan Loy (born 1951) is an American artist, calligrapher, and author best known for her "Literary Calligraphy" watercolor paintings of the Language of Flowers and the White House Easter Egg Roll. These paintings combine hand-lettered classic quotations from William Shakespeare, Emily Dickinson, Biblical sources, etc. with finely-rendered illustration done with steel pens and brushes.


Loy was a 1969 graduate of Midpark High School in Middleburg Heights, Ohio. She graduated in American Studies from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. Loy’s graduate studies included art history,[1] literature, and geography at Ohio State University.[2]

She worked as a research associate at the Columbus (Ohio) Museum of Fine Art and as a geographer at Battelle Memorial Institute,[3] also in Columbus, Ohio.

Loy took a calligraphy course in Columbus in 1978 and was captivated; she later explained that the pen was like a magic wand when she picked it up.[4] She felt that her research background in cognitive geography and art history brought her into the art world “through the back door,” rather than gaining entrance through studio classes as is typical for most artists.[5]


It was during the 1980s that Loy developed the circular mandala combined with calligraphic hand-lettering that has become her style.[5][6] The art columnist for The Roanoke Times dubbed Loy’s works a mix of “magic circles, calligraphy, and philosophical texts.” [7] Loy told a reporter that she had adopted a “commercially refined style for the calligraphy.” [8]

In 2000, the coordinator of the Yankee Peddler Foundation in Medina, Ohio stated that, "Ms. Loy’s Literary Calligraphy demonstrates how type blossoms into art in a calligrapher’s hand.” [9]

In 2008, Loy estimated that she had completed 150 modern mandalas.[10]

Language of Flowers[edit]

Loy has completed numerous paintings and authored a book on the Language of Flowers. The March, 1994 edition of Victorian Sampler magazine featured Susan in an article entitled “The Language of Flowers.” [11][12] Loy wrote an article for the Emily Dickinson International Society where she described her artistic process for painting a suite of Dickinson poems.[13] In 2001 Susan Loy’s book on the Language of Flowers, Flowers the Angel’s Alphabet, was published.[14][15] It won the 2002 Benjamin Franklin Award for the Gardening/Agriculture category and for the Reference category from the Independent Book Publishers Association.[16]

White House Easter Egg Roll[edit]

A highlight of Loy’s career was her 3-year relationship with the White House Easter Egg Roll. In 1997, Loy was chosen as the Easter egg artist for the state of Virginia whose painted egg was displayed at the White House.[17][18] Loy was chosen to serve as 1998 Artist-on-the-Lawn and to create the program cover for the 1998 White House Easter Egg Roll and to capture impressions of that event.[19][20] As Artist on the Lawn, Loy painted “The White House Easter Egg Roll, 1878-1998” as the official poster for the 1999 event,[21] and presented it to the President Bill Clinton and First Lady Hillary Clinton.[22]

Constitution Project[edit]

Loy’s hand-lettering of the U.S. Constitution project began after the September 11 attacks in 2001 when she was stopped by the police of three separate occasions beginning in May 2002.[23] She began her Constitution paintings with the preamble.[24] Susan spoke to several school classes on Constitution Day, September 17, 2007.[25][26]


  1. ^ "Focus 3". Fourth Annual Invitational Art Show. Middleburg Heights, Ohio: Southwest Arts Council. 1989. p. 4.
  2. ^ Tinder, Melody (January 22, 2003). "Meet Your Neighbors". Smith Mountain Eagle.
  3. ^ Hoy, Bill (September 7, 1983). "Couple combines hi-tech careers, rural lifestyle". The Bedford Bulletin Democrat: 5A.
  4. ^ Murray, M (January 2000). "This is fine artist Susan Loy". Sugarloaf Crafts Festival. Gaithersburg, MD: George Verdier. 16 (1): 1.
  5. ^ a b Willis, Linda (February 2, 1987). "Working in Circles: Loy Uses Mandalas To Convey Artistic Message". Franklin News-Post. Rocky Mount, VA: 1, 6B.
  6. ^ Bennett, Michelle S. (January 1990). "On The Cover". Hear and Now. Roanoke, VA: WVTF Public Radio: 3.
  7. ^ Weinstein, A (January 17, 1988). "Artemis exhibition compares favorably with Roanoke museum's biennial show". Roanoke Times and World News. Roanoke, VA: E9.
  8. ^ Scherba, M (March 28, 1988). "Lake Helps Inspire Couple". Franklin New-Post. Rocky Mount, VA: 6–7B.
  9. ^ "2000 Yankee Peddler Foundation Crafter/Artist of the Year" (Press release). Yankee Peddler Foundation. April 29, 2000.
  10. ^ "Featured Artist: Calligrapher Susan Loy". Southern Vermont Art and Craft Festival Program. Manchester, VT: Craftproducers: 11. August 1, 2008.
  11. ^ French (Ed.), M (March 1994). "The Language of Flowers". Victorian Sampler. St. Charles, IL: Denise Boba: 70–71.
  12. ^ Lyon (Ed.), R (December 8, 1993). "Magazine to feature Moneta Artist". The Smith Mountain Eagle. Wirtz, VA: Womack Publishing: 5A.
  13. ^ Loy, S (November–December 1997). "Painting the Flowers of Emily Dickinson". Emily Dickinson International Society Bulletin. 9 (2): 6–7, 22–23.
  14. ^ Loy, Susan (2001). Tapp, Rosemary, ed. Flowers, the Angel's Alphabet (1st ed.). Moneta, VA: CSL Press. p. 212. ISBN 0-9702113-1-7.
  15. ^ Dickinson, B (November 25, 2001). "The calligraphy of flowers". The Roanoke Times. Roanoke, VA: Horizon 6.
  16. ^ Marriano, G (June 2002). "Susan Loy Wins Two Major Awards for "Flowers the Angel's Alphabet"". City. Roanoke, VA: 34.
  17. ^ Lyon (Ed.), R (March 26, 1997). "No 'yolk' -- Easter egg White House-bound". Smith Mountain Eagle. Wirtz, VA: Womack Publishing: 1.
  18. ^ "Area calligrapher's work on display at White House". The News & Advance. Lynchburg, VA: D3. March 28, 1997.
  19. ^ Patterson, K (April 14, 1998). "The White House Hosts Area Artist for Easter". The News & Advance. Lynchburg, VA: C1.
  20. ^ Poindexter, J (April 10, 1998). "Moneta artist on roll at Easter-egg event". The Roanoke Times. Roanoke, VA.
  21. ^ Lyon (Ed.), R (March 31, 1999). "Artist 'egg'-cited about Easter trip". Smith Mountain Eagle. Wirtz, VA: Womack Publishing: B1.
  22. ^ "Loy presents commemorative poster to President and First Lady". The Bedford Bulletin. Bedford, VA: 5A. April 7, 1999.
  23. ^ O'Neill, B (June 12, 2008). "Embracing the Constitution, one letter at a time". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Pittsburgh, PA: A-2.
  24. ^ Lyon, R (September 15, 2010). "U.S. Constitution becomes a work of art". Smith Mountain Eagle. Wirtz, VA: Womack Publishing: 5A.
  25. ^ Desrets, C (December 18, 2007). "Constitution Art". The News & Advance. Lynchburg, VA: A1, A8.
  26. ^ Jackson, R (September 19, 2007). "Artist shares Constitution calligraphy". Smith Mountain Eagle. Wirtz, VA: Womack Publishing: 9A.

External links[edit]

Category:American artists Category:Calligraphers Category:1951 births