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Artist Heather Rubinstein

Heather Rubinstein

New York, United States


American, b. 1975   —   Assimilating painted passages and found textiles, recto and verso surfaces, suspended sweeping brush strokes, and transparent layers of interwoven texture and thread, my paintings draw on a diverse range of materials. Sourced exclusively from thrift stores, I primarily paint on: bed sheets, duvets, linens, drapes, crochets, lace, cheap designer scarves, women's business suits, and other unidentifiable discards, often redolent of my childhood in the 1970s and 1980s. These textiles are subjected to various procedures: folding, crumpling, staining, dyeing, bleaching, patterning, brushwork, cutting, stitching and sewing. I am aware of how these processes relate to the traditional domain of women — and there's a feminist subtext in my use/misuse of textiles and domestic items. As a painter, I love the porousness and flexible qualities of the materials, how the unfinished fabrics absorb pigment so easily—you don’t get that with conventional canvas—as well as their status as recycled, repurposed products. Topography is also important: the layouts of formal gardens, ancient city plans, the cultivation of land. I find, I stain, I sew, I paint, I stitch, I tear apart, I reassemble into new configurations, I tear apart again, making and unmaking and remaking, remaking painting. Of Interest: the densely patterned interiors of Vuillard and Bonnard; gestural abstractions by Joan Mitchell and Cy Twombly, Rauschenberg’s Combines and Spreads, deconstructive 1970s painters like Alan Shields and Al Loving, French painters Simon Hantaï, Claude Viallat and Noёl Dolla, Tribal Rugs of the Black Tent, Persian and early Egyptian textiles.... Heather Bause Rubinstein (b.1975 Engelwood, New Jersey), was raised in Houston, Texas, where she earned both her BFA and MFA in Painting from the University of Houston. Her exhibitions include, “High Violet", at McClain Gallery,” "Hard Tension/Soft Surface" at The Projects Gallery; "The Stanford-Binet" at Darke Gallery, and the installation "Wallpaper/Art" at The Art League, Houston, Texas. In 2017, Heather, with her husband art critic Raphael Rubinstein, created an “exploded book,” public art installation, “The Miraculous in Houston", using the texts from Rubinstein’s 2014 Paper Monument published book, ‘The Miraculous.’ ‘The Miraculous in Houston’ was created in conjunction with CounterCurrent17, and installed across the 600-acre campus of the University of Houston, Texas. Her work has been included in group exhibitions in New York: Pierogi Gallery, Site Brooklyn, MANA Contemporary and at the Elizabeth Foundation; the Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art, Greece; and numerous spaces in Texas: Devin Borden Gallery, Zoya Tommy Gallery, Gallery Homeland, the Blaffer Museum, RedBud Gallery and Poissant Gallery; Galleri Urbane, Dallas, Texas and the Diary Center for Art in Boulder, Colorado. In 2018, Heather and Rapahel Rubinstein curated “Under Erasure” at Pierogi Gallery in New York, as well as “A time before we were born: Visions of Arcadia,” at the WaldKim Foundation in New York; On/Repeat in 2017 in Houston, TX, and text installations at Mana Contemporary, in New York. Her studio is currently located at the Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts building in the Garment District in Manhattan, New York.

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Heather Rubinstein

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