Mary Heilmann: Good Vibrations

Apr 29, 2013 5:46PM
21st Century Fox, 1998
Crown Point Press

In this extensive volume, the loved and admired New York painter Mary Heilmann (born 1940) receives a monograph worthy of her influential ouevre. Often viewed as an artist’s artist, Heilmann paints as if free from the influence of precedent artists, galvanized by bold color and assertive gesture, against a backdrop of almost tangible playfulness, warmth and fun. Her carefree gestures embody what critic Dave Hickey, terms “the surfer’s ethic of finding the moment to fall and never trying too hard to save your life.” Cubist disarray, Constructivist rigor, Abstract Expressionist splatter and Color Field glow all contribute to her approach, which is always instantly identifiable. This publication, which accompanies her 2012–13 major touring European retrospective, is the largest appraisal of her work currently available.