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Home Jenny Heishman: New Work

Jenny Heishman: New Work

by Meredith Areskoug
Jenny Heishman, Rug 1 and Pattern, 2016,handmade paper: cardboard pulp, abaca fi ber, clothing dye, tape, burlap.Hand-hooked rug: wool and cotton backing, 2017.

SPECIALIST GALLERY, SEATTLE WA – Oct 4 – Nov 25 

By Matthew Kangas

Jenny Heishman’s new work at Specialist Gallery in Pioneer Square follows on her 2016 residency at Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, where she devised her method of transferring handmade pulped-paper compositions into hand-hooked wool rugs. “One fiber re-interpreted by another. One process is rapid and spontaneous … and the other is deliberate and repetitive process,” the Ohio University graduate (MFA, 1998) mentioned in an interview from her Bainbridge Island home. Her studio is in Seattle, however, where she has exhibited since 2000. Heishman’s found-object sculpture has also been seen in group exhibitions in Great Britain, Victoria, Vancouver, Miami, and Austin, Texas.

Heishman is deeply involved in art in public places; she has worked with the Seattle and King County arts commissions as well as corporate entities such as art collector Paul Allen’s Vulcan Real Estate in the South Lake Union area. Her 2012 project for Vulcan, Woodpile, was named among the top 50 public art projects of the year by the Public Art Network.

The 2011 recipient of a prestigious Pollock-Krasner Foundation grant, Heishman studied craft processes at the Penland School in North Carolina. Working in both studio settings and the public art realm, Heishman combines public and private imagery into conglomerations of highly structured yet increasingly loose and informal combinations of materials. Awkward, disorienting and often catching the viewer off guard, they are, she says, “examples of how art can catch one unaware and challenge our expectations of where art might be or emerge.” 

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