Susan O'Malley: Advice From My 80-Year-Old Self

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Quick Overview

+ 7.6 x 0.6 x 10.4 inches
+ 128 pages
+ Hardcover
+ Published by Chronicle Books
+ ISBN 9781452139937
Published in January 2016


What advice would your 80-year-old self give you? That is the question artist Susan O'Malley, who was herself to die far too young, asked more than a hundred ordinary people of every age, from every walk of life. She then transformed their responses into vibrant text-based images. From a prompt to do things that matter to your heart, to a reminder that it's okay to have sugar in your tea, these are calls to action and words to live by—heartfelt, sometimes humorous, and always fiercely compassionate. This stirring celebration of our collective humanity unveils the wisdom we hold inside ourselves right now.


Susan O’Malley (1976-2015) was an artist and curator from the San Francisco Bay Area. From posters to pep talks, billboards to vending machines, her art uses simple and recognizable tools of engagement to connect people to one another. O’Malley’s artwork has been exhibited in public projects across the United States—including the Montalvo Art Center, Kala Art Institute, and Palo Alto Art Center in California; the Contemporary Art Museum in Houston; and the Parthenon Museum in Nashville—as well as in galleries and museums in the United Kingdom, Denmark, and Poland. Her installation Finding Your Center was recently featured at San Francisco’s Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, and her project A Healing Walk is permanently installed at Villa Montalvo in Northern California.

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