‘Memory Remix’, Mary Heilmann’s first Los Angeles solo exhibition in over 20 years – a survey of paintings, ceramics, and furniture in which the artist’s unwavering dedication to abstraction merges with sly references to her favorite landscapes, songs, movies, and Mexican weavings – opens this week at Hauser & Wirth Los Angeles.
Born and raised in California, Heilmann’s early influences remained dormant in her life and work for many years in paintings that innovatively navigate between abstraction and allusion. ‘Waves and Particles’ (1989), for example, illustrates her early interest in physics and speaks to her study of the ocean’s patterns and geometries through a bold palette mimicking the vibrancy of West Coast mid-century modern architecture and design.
Acclaimed for her unique ability to deploy the analytical geometries of Minimalism with the spontaneous freehanded spirit of the Beat Generation from which her generation emerged, and for her weaving of pop culture influences into a wholly original and pioneering oeuvre, Heilmann’s deft handling of paint and spatially dichotomous compositions have exerted a profound influence upon a younger group of artists. ‘Every piece of abstract art that I make has a backstory’ — #MaryHeilmann.