Susan Hensel was raised in the Finger Lakes of New York in the 1950's. She traveled the world as a young teen, living in Taiwan in 1962, stopping in Hong Kong, Bankok, New Delhi, Cairo, Athens, Rome, Frankfort, Stuttgart, Baden, Paris, and London before she entered high school.
Susan studied one summer at Cornell University and another summer in Perugia, Italy before going on to University of Michigan where she earned a BFA in Painting and Sculpture. She went on to a twenty year career in functional and sculptural ceramics.
In the late 1970's Susan began a serious hobbyist's interest in handmade paper, producing colorful wall work on biological themes. Life, in all its vicissitudes, intervened, pushing paper out of the studio for 4 or 5 years. Parenthood limited art production to clay. Widowhood shut down all art production for a time, but ultimately re-opened the door to drawing, writing and papermaking.
In the mid 1980's Susan began a serious study of handmade paper, traveling around the United States to study. Very soon, paper blew through the studio, sweeping clay totally out the door, never to return. As is often the case, books soon followed. Susan found that books allowed her to use every skill she has ever learned over the years drawing, painting, sculpture, writing, literary research, sewing, cutting, papermaking, computer work, collage, rubberstamping, printmaking.
Susan's exhibition history covers more than thirty years. For twenty years she participated in Michigan's finest juried art fairs, while maintaining a gallery presence. Now her work is exhibited in competitions, galleries from coast to coast, museum shows and is represented in collections in this country.