Jay Heikes

Born in Princeton, New Jersey in 1975. Lives and works in Minneapolis, USA.

After graduating from the University of Michigan in 1998, he furthered his studies with a postgraduate Master in Fine Arts at Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut.

Heikes is known for his heterogeneous practice. He is capable of merging abstract painting, video, installation, performance and sculpture with a common romantic approach, and a grotesque, amused mood that characterizes his approach. His work shows the precarious nature of all allusions to the real, particularly the continuous changes and shifts of all cultural, visual, and experiential references. It captures how different materials engage with each other, especially after a chemical change. The sheer materiality of Heikes’ recent work reflects his dissatisfaction with contemporary art in the participatory, performative tradition, and a desire to return attention to painting, sculpture and installation.

"I believe there is a point just beyond corrosion, one of complete alienation between human and material where there are things to be discovered but also the possibility of destruction. In the studio I feel more like an alchemist lately than a sculptor. I have been working with a range of materials from raw silk, aluminum sulphate, porcupine quills, iron, bronze, leather, concrete, goose feathers and steel. All of these endeavors are translating into a concern for very simple things like line, texture, space and scale. The materials have become the content and my hope is to understand how we relate to them even in a place as out of nature as the gallery space.”

His work has been exhibited at museums and institutions including: Painter Painter, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis 2013; Buried in the Bright, Aspen Art Museum, Aspen 2012; Project Space, ICA-Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia 2007; Day For Night: Whitney Biennial 2006, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York 2006; Ordinary Culture: Heikes/Helms/McMilian, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis 2006; All the Pretty Corpses, The Renaissance Society at the University of Chicago, Chicago 2005; The Hill Upstairs, MoMA PS.1, New York 2005; Kill Yr Idols, Artists Space, New York, 2003.

Selected solo and group exhibitions: Keep Out, Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York, USA (2017); No future ism, Federica Schiavo Gallery Milano, Milan, Italy (2016); I Talk with the Spirits, Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York, NY, USA (2016); Grimm Gallery, Amsterdam, The Netherlands (2015); Fondazione Giuliani, Rome, Italy (2015); Reserve Ames, Los Angeles, CA, USA (2015); Shane Campbell Gallery, Lincoln Park, IL, USA (2015); Federica Schiavo Gallery, Rome, Italy (2014); Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York, NY, USA (2013); Shane Campbell Gallery, Chicago, ILL, USA (2011); Federica Schiavo Gallery, Rome, Italy (2011); Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York, NY, USA (2010); Federica Schiavo Gallery, Rome, Italy (2009); Galleria Comunale d’Arte Contemporanea di Monfalcone, Gorizia, Italy (2010); Midway Contemporary Art, Minneapolis, MN, USA (2009); Martian Museum of Terrestrial Art, Barbican Art Gallery, London, UK (2008); White Columns, New York, NY, USA (2007).

Residencesies: The Chinati Foundation, Marfa, TX, USA (2016).

In 2014 Jay Heikes has curated the pubblication Trieste, an extensive catalogue documenting the various incarnations of the group show he organized from 2012 to 2014. Trieste has been exhibited at the Federica Schiavo Gallery, Rome 2012; Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York 2013; Grimm Gallery, Amsterdam 2014.