press release

Heike Weber concluded Chinati’s 2004 Artist in Residence season with her exhibition, It’s grand to yearn for something that can never be attained, for yearning withers on the verge of fulfillment. The show featured wall drawings and drawings on paper as well as looped video footage.

In her installations, Weber takes as a starting point her perceptions of the given architectural space and then activates the space with wall drawings of abstract patterns or figurative images borrowed from newspapers and Baroque paintings. These pieces are made with unconventional materials such as vinyl, sticky labels, clothesline, hairnet, and carpet. Weber treats each surface of the room—the walls and floor—as if they are 3-dimensional spaces. As a result, her drawings take on a sculptural quality. In an effort to preserve the light and open feeling of the Locker Plant’s front room, whose south wall is composed almost entirely of windows, Weber drew three figures, “astronaut,” “dreamer,” and “jumper”—one per wall—that appeared to be suspended in space, either flying or falling; the state of the figures was intentionally ambiguous. The figures were first drawn flat on the floor with a thick acrylic-based window paint. Once they were dry, Weber carefully peeled the plastic drawings off the floor and affixed them to the wall with fine silver nails, leaving several inches between the image and surface so that the figures seemed to hover in space. Drawn in perspective, the figures appeared to be flying out from the center of the room and into white space.

Weber also exhibited graphite drawings of stars. Made on white paper, the images reversed the way we are accustomed to seeing stars (as white forms against a dark background.) Weber showed nearly forty of these drawings, each of which were based on a different grouping of constellations in the Marfa sky. Hung in one even row around the room, the series appeared almost as film stills or pages from a flipbook.

The exhibition also featured looped footage from Glück, a film Weber made in Austria showing a walk through a field of clovers. “Glück” means “happiness” and “luck” in German and implies the fleeting quality of both. Ephemerality was central to this show—in the momentary suspension of people in the air, fading stars, and passing Glück.

Weber lives and works in Cologne, Germany. She has had recent solo exhibitions at the Museum Morsbroich (2004) and the Kunstmuseum Bonn (2003), and was part of group exhibitions at Kunsthalle Fridericianum (2004), Kunstalle Baden-Baden (2004), and Kunstverein Hannover (2003), all in Germany. Weber has participated in numerous artist residencies throughout Europe, and has an upcoming residency at Villa Casa Baldi, near Rome. She holds a degree in fine arts from Fachhochschule Aachen.

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Heike Weber
Artist in Residence