Andrea Joyce Heimer “Big Sky”

Half Gallery

poster for Andrea Joyce Heimer “Big Sky”
[Image: Andrea Joyce Heimer "Riding Double, Back From The River At Night Past A Big Snake In The Grass" (2020) Acrylic on panel 18 x 24 in.]

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“Big Sky refers to my home state of Montana, where I grew up and lived until my early twenties or so. These paintings contain autobiographical snippets of my adolescence there, but to me they’re more about landscape than anything else. Montana is sparsely populated and still wild in many ways. The western half is cut through stem to stern by the Rocky Mountains and the eastern half stretches into mile after mile of prairie and badlands. The state attracts rebels, free-thinkers, wackos, ranchers, and people who get kicked out of other places. I grew up feeling lost and out of place in the small suburban neighborhood depicted in these paintings. Back then you could drive your car to the edge of town, sit on your bumper, and facedown nothing but plains, tumbleweeds, and a jagged row of mountains in the distance. The towns there are so spread apart they just end and then the landscape is wild again. There is a particular bone-chilling loneliness in having one foot in what is meant to feel like home and the other on ancient, ferocious ground. The feeling is at once claustrophobic and agoraphobic.

Very recently while researching my adoption I learned my birth family is actually not from Montana, despite what I’ve been told. My birth mother, a fifteen year old who would go on to be homecoming queen, was sent there to give birth in secret to avoid a hometown (midwest, it turns out) scandal. She gave birth and left me there—with strangers—swaddled between all those mountains and all that prairie. These paintings are about that landscape.” – Andrea Joyce Heimer
Andrea Joyce Heimer (b. 1981, Great Falls, MT; lives and works in Ferndale, Washington) received her MFA from the New Hampshire Institute of Art in Manchester, New Hampshire. Her work has been exhibited at Nino Mier, Los Angeles; Colombo Gallery, Milan; Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art, Philadelphia; Andrew Edlin Gallery, New York and Franklin Parrasch Gallery, New York.



from July 22, 2020 to August 14, 2020

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