Woven Traits

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Heidi Howard: Ivan Forde, 2016 Oil On Canvas 48 X 40 Inches © Courtesy of the Artist and Nancy Margolis Gallery
Woven Traits

523 W. 25th St.
10001 New York
May 18th, 2017 - June 24th, 2017

Tue-Sat 10-6


Nancy Margolis Gallery is pleased to announce the opening of Heidi Howard’s second solo exhibition titled “Woven Traits.” The exhibition will begin on May 18th, and continue through June 24th, 2017. The artist reception is Thursday, May 18th from 6pm to 8 pm and is open to the public.

Heidi Howard paints portraits of friends and family. The paintings on view began in November 2015 with a personal invitation Howard made to friends, asking them to come to her studio with a piece of fabric on which their portrait would be painted. The small gouaches on fabric are the paintings Howard made with the sitters during their visits to her studio. Howard’s depictions of the fabric’s owners reveal a cosmology of relationships between object, memory, and our lived experience.  Howard responds compositionally to the patterned fabric in her effort to weave it into the portrait of its owner. In some cases she chooses to make the portrait less visible or almost out of sight, and in other cases strong and prominent.

Most of Howard’s larger canvases use fabric or poses from the gouaches as points of departure.  The larger surfaces are canvas primed with layers of white gesso. On the smooth surfaces Howard’s loose seemingly quick movements, drawn with a procession of staccato marks are reminiscent of weaving and threads, of the pieces of cloth she had been painting on for the Fabric Project. The white gessoed surface allows for a transparency of mark and a clarity of line, that contrasts with the rough surfaces sof many of the sitter’s fabrics, and also with the rough rabbit skin glued surfaces Howard painted on from 2012 to 2016.

For Howard, portraiture is more than creating an image or portrait of the sitter before her. It is for her an opening to something deep and rewarding that takes place between two friends, the sitter and the artist.

Heidi Howard put together and printed a zine (short for magazine, self-published, small circulation) for this exhibition. It will include images of her portraits, and writing by many of the artists Heidi painted for Fabric Project. The zine will be available at the opening reception May 18. Limited editions. Reserve your copy. Each is $20.00

Heidi Howard (B. 1986, New York, NY) is a painter based in Queens, New York and Amsterdam, Netherlands.  In 2014 she received her MFA from Columbia University.  Recent exhibitions include “Spring 2017 – Group Exhibition” at Gaa Gallery (Colgne, Germany), “Red” curated by Heather Cammarata-Seale at the Hunterdon Art Museum (Hunterdon, NJ) and “Intimisms” coorganized by Aliza Nisenbaum and David Norr at James Cohan Gallery (New York, NY). In December 2014 Nancy Margolis Gallery featured her work at MIAMI PROJECT during Miami Basel week.  Howard had her first solo exhibition with Nancy Margolis Gallery in 2015 titled “Portrait and Dream”.  Her work was also included in Nancy Margolis Gallery’s group exhibition, “Figuration Inside/Out” in 2015.  This upcoming exhibition, “Woven Traits”, will be her 2nd solo exhibition with the gallery. Her work has been reviewed in the Brooklyn Rail, Art F City and on, among other publications. Her paintings are also featured in Bette Gordon’s recent film “The Drowning,” playing at IFC Center, New York, NY, starting May 10 and available on iTunes June 1.

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