Press Release


The UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAMPFA) is pleased to announce a new exhibition featuring work by Jay Heikes, the Minneapolis-based artist whose practice explores myriad subjects, including the interplay between language, landscape, music, and material discovery. Jay Heikes / MATRIX 269 presents a selection from a new body of work, inspired by a 2017 residency Heikes had in Marfa, Texas, which explores motifs relating to the desert and the presence of the nearby Mexican border. The exhibition launches the 40th anniversary of BAMPFA's MATRIX Program, which introduces Bay Area audiences to exceptional voices in contemporary art.



















 




















 





























International exhibitions

International Archives 1st half of 2018


Jay Heikes / MATRIX 269

BAMFA, Berkeley (United States)

14.02 - 29.04.2018


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Exhibition February 14 - April 29, 2018. University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAMPFA), 2120 Oxford Street - Berkeley, CA 94720 (USA).









 







 











 





 



























 





 











Jay Heikes / MATRIX 269, BAMFA, Berkeley

© ArtCatalyse International / Marika Prévosto 2018. All Rights Reserved

Jay Heikes, Zs, 2017. Steel slag, salt, glue, pigment, ink, fiberglass, rubber snakes, copper wire, acorn husks, rocks, dirt. 51 x 38 x 4 in. Courtesy of the artist and Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York and Aspen.

Jay Heikes, Zs, 2017. Steel slag, salt, glue, pigment, ink, fiberglass, rubber snakes, copper wire, acorn husks, rocks, dirt. 51 x 38 x 4 in. Courtesy of the artist and Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York and Aspen.




The son of a chemist, Heikes likens his practice to a form of alchemy, and his work often evokes a sense of curiosity about the potential transformation of material objects. Moreover, as a former musician, music remains an integral aspect of his practice, which also encompasses drawing, painting, sculpture, video, and other forms. Two drawings from Heikes’s "Music for Minor Planets" series, which fuse the visual aesthetics of musical notation and galactic constellations, are included in his MATRIX presentation. A nearby sculpture installation, also titled Minor Planets, extends the visual metaphor of heavenly bodies with earthbound orbs made from such alchemically significant materials as bismuth, Gladstone ore, asphaltum, copper, and lignum vitae.

Jay Heikes / MATRIX 269 also includes a selection of paintings from the "Z” series made in Marfa that reference the last letter of the alphabet through such eclectic materials as salt, steel slag, copper, fiberglass, acorn husks, and snakes. He developed the paintings as a way to signal the limits of rational language. A different kind of visual metaphor is suggested by two large-scale copper fences featured in the exhibition, which conjure the metaphorical weight of man-madeborders cutting across a vast desert landscape.

“In addition to activating a reflection on our cultural moment, the works in MATRIX 269 highlight Heikes’s commitment to the material properties of the art object and his probing of potential form,” said Apsara DiQuinzio, BAMPFA’s curator of modern and contemporary art and Phyllis C. Wattis MATRIX Curator. “Together, the works embody the artist’s longing for transcendence amid the deluge of negative media in the wake of the 2016 presidential election, and the attendant demonizing rhetoric of the Other.”

As the first MATRIX artist of 2018, Heikes joins a distinguished roster of contemporary artists who have presented work through the program over the past 40 years, including Jean-Michel Basquiat, Louise Bourgeois, James Lee Byars, Sophie Calle, Jay DeFeo, Willem de Kooning, Juan Downey, Eva Hesse, Sol LeWitt, Shirin Neshat, Nancy Spero, Cecilia Vicuña, Andy Warhol, and many others. His exhibition is the first of several MATRIX exhibitions at BAMPFA throughout the program’s 40th anniversary year; for details about other upcoming MATRIX shows and related programs, visit www.bampfa.org.

Support
Jay Heikes / MATRIX 269 is organized by Apsara DiQuinzio, curator of modern and contemporary art and Phyllis C. Wattis MATRIX Curator, with Matthew Coleman, curatorial assistant. The MATRIX Program is made possible by a generous endowment gift from Phyllis C. Wattis and the continued support of the BAMPFA Trustees.