Three Things You Should Know About Jay Heikes
Heikes’ irregularly-shaped, densely-textured ‘cave paintings’ are the result of laborious rubbings, many of which come from pigmented animal hides. The thickness of the object and the primal imprint of the artist’s hand suggest a kind of Paleolithic ritual object.
Jay Heikes’ irregularly-shaped, densely-textured ‘cave paintings’ are the result of laborious rubbings, many of which come from pigmented animal hides. The thickness of the object and the primal imprint of the artist’s hand suggest a kind of Paleolithic ritual object. Heikes’ paintings conjure the myth of the artist coming into being where the most prehistoric tools, marks, and gestures combine to make a truly contemporary and meditative work. Last year, one of Heikes’ cave paintings entered the Walker Art Center’s collection. Heikes lives and works in Minneapolis. His work has been exhibited at the ICA, Philadelphia; the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago.
Image rights: Courtesy of the artist and [Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York](http://artsy.net/marianne-boesky-gallery)
With an almost cathartic practice, Jay Heikes seeks to purge himself of past fixations in search of a freer artistic expression. His drawings, sculptures, videos, and installations appropriate and alter text and imagery from pop culture, crafting a personal narrative about the struggle for individuality. His 2009 work Generational Anxiety, a serpentine bronze and iron sculpture, embodies Heikes' fear of cyclical reptition. In the video Kill Yr Idols part III (2011), Heikes references musicians and artists whom he idolizes, the work’s slow reveal a meditation on the important role time plays in shedding such a deep impression. Among Heikes’ diverse influences are Alighiero e Boetti, as well as the artists of the Arte Povera movement like Michelangelo Pistoletto and Pier Paolo Calzolari.
American, b. 1975