In her debut solo display in New York City, Mary Heebner will mount an exhibition in both galleries of the Queen Sofia Spanish Institute. The multimedia exhibition is entitled, INTIMACIES/INTIMISMOS, will feature Heebner's lush paintings on paper, her accompanying artist's book of the same name, and an bilingual audio and visual installation featuring select love poems by Pablo Neruda. The installation at the Queen Sofia Spanish Institute will feature a reading of select Neruda poems with Dr. Lía Schwartz de Lerner and Valerie Mejer recording the original Spanish and Alastair Reid himself giving voice to his new English translations.
Inspired by Neruda's way of speaks of love as an open, vulnerable embrace of life - a navigation of this world with the heart and soul -- Heebner incorporates drawing, painting and printmaking processes into her abstractions which build on forms of the body. The project marks the recent release of INTIMACIES: Poems of Love (Harper Collins) which is the second in a series that pairs Heebner's painting with the poetry of Pablo Neruda as translated by Alastair Reid. As translator Alastair Reid commented, "The poems illumine the paintings and the paintings illuminate the poetry."
The first Neruda-based collaboration between Ms. Heebner and Mr. Reid, ON THE BLUE SHORE OF SILENCE: Poems of the Sea by Pablo Neruda, began when Ms. Heebner approached Mr. Reid suggesting to use his translations to create a book that paired painting and poetry with a series of her paintings inspired by the vast Pacific Ocean off the poet's home in Isla Negra, Chile. This resulted in a handmade-paper artist's book, printed letterpress in an edition of fifty copies was later released on the occasion of the centenary of Neruda's birth by Harper Collins as a trade publication in 2004.
Intimacies/Intmismos follows Heebner's recent multi-media installation at the UCLA Fowler Museum in 2006. Heebner's paintings are held in the collections of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and her artist's books found in the collections of the Getty Research Institute and Harvard University among other private and institutional collections.
The exhibition's opening event will take place on Thursday, January 15, 2009 from 6 p.m. - 8 p.m. A bilingual poetry reading with Mr. Cristian Campos (Cultural Attaché, Embassy of Chile) and PEN Award translator Alastair Reid will precede a gallery viewing with artist Mary Heebner. There is a reception to follow, which is free to the public.