Susanne Leeb studied art history, philosophy and modern German literature at the University of Cologne. After her studies she held various project assistantships at the Wallraf-Richartz-Museum in Cologne and was editor of the journal Texte zur Kunst from 1999-2001. She was awarded a doctorate within the framework of the graduate college "Representation-Rhetoric-Knowledge" at the European University Viadrina in Frankfurt/Oder with a thesis on "The Art of Others. World Art and the Anthropological Configuration of Modernity." Since 2007, she has worked as a research associate at the SFB "Aesthetic Experience in the Sign of the Dissolution of Artistic Boundaries" at Freie Universität and, after a substitute professorship at the Academy of Fine Arts in Nuremberg, was appointed to the Laurenz Assistant Professorship at the Art History Department of the University of Basel. Since 2014 she has been Professor of Contemporary Art at Leuphana University Lüneburg.
There, in addition to her professorship, she is the director of the Leuphana Institute of Advanced Studies in Culture and Society together with Erich Hörl. Together with Ulf Wuggenig, she directs the Art Space (Kunstraum) at Leuphana University Lüneburg.

In the BA she teaches especially in the specialization "Art and Visual Culture", in the MA in "Critique of the Present: Arts - Theory - History" as well as in the complementary studies. Her seminars mainly deal with questions of transcultural art history, e.g. "Transcultural Art History and Cosmpolitical Modernity", "Property and Posession in Art and Cultural Theory", "Subject Critique in 20th and 21st Century Art", "Documenta 15 - Artist Collectives", "Art and Technology(Critique)", "Tribunals in Contemporary Art" or "Black Aesthetics from the Harlem Renaissance to #blacklivesmatter".