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Robert Heinecken: Object Matter (MoMA, New York)

Publisher: New York: The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA, New York), 2014
Edition: 1st Edition
Binding: Hardcover
ISBN: 9780870709067
Condition: New / New
Item #: 110432

$50.00

Specifics

First edition, first printing. Hardcover. Photographically illustrated paper-covered boards, with printed acetate dust jacket (text printed in white on inside flaps). Works in various media by Robert Heinecken. Text by Eva Respini and Jennifer Jae Guttierez. Edited by Eva Respini. 188 pp., with 178 four-color and 65 black-and-white illustrations. 12 x 9-1/2 inches. Published on the occasion of a major retrospective exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art.

Condition

New in publisher's clear plastic encosure.

Description

From the publisher: "Robert Heinecken was a pioneer in the postwar Los Angeles art scene who described himself as a para-photographer because his work stood 'beside' or 'beyond' traditional ideas of the medium. Published in conjunction with the first museum exhibition of the artist's work since his death in 2006, this publication covers four decades of his remarkable and unique practice, from the early 1960s through the late 1990s, with special emphasis on his early experiments with technique and materiality. Culling images from newspapers, magazine advertisements and television, Heinecken recontextualized them through collage and assemblage, double-sided photograms, photolithography and re-photography. Although he was rarely behind the lens of a camera, his photo-based works question the nature of photography and radically redefine the perception of it as an artistic medium.

As the most comprehensive survey of Heinecken's oeuvre, this book sets his work in the context of twentieth-century history of photographic experimentation and conceptual art. An illustrated essay by conservator Jennifer Jae Gutierrez about the artist's experimental techniques, which ranged from photograms to photolithography to collage, contributes to the sparse scholarship on Heinecken's working methods."

About Robert Heinecken:

Robert Heinecken is one of the most innovative and influential artists of the second half of the 20th century. He was a pioneer of postmodern photographic practices, and his work anticipated the Pictures Generation artists of the 1970s and 1980s who practiced the appropriation of images from advertising and the media. A self-described “para-photographer,” Heinecken was always challenging the conventions of the then-accepted “canon” of photography. He transformed the possibilities of the medium, and had a profound impact on many photography-based artists who studied with him.

Influenced by Dada and Surrealism, especially Marcel Duchamp, Man Ray and John Heartfield, Heinecken worked with numerous photographic techniques and materials, oftentimes combining them with various printmaking processes. In addition to offset lithography and etching, he made use of film transparencies, photographic emulsion on canvas, gelatin silver prints mounted to wood (e.g., "Multiple Solution Puzzle" Series), Polaroid materials, mixed media collage and photograms (e.g., ARE YOU REA and Recto/Verso Series).

His source materials included popular “lifestyle” magazines, advertising, images taken directly from television screens, pornography and news photographs. Through his ground-breaking works, Heinecken transformed American notions of consumerism, war, eroticism and mass media.

From Robert Heinecken (in the mid-1960s): "We constantly tend to misuse or misunderstand the term reality in reference to photographs. The photograph itself is the only thing that is real, that exists... (There is a vast difference between taking a picture and making a photograph.)."

An excerpt from a text written by Carl Chiarenza (in 1976): "He uses existing photographs... and their reproductions because they have littered the world and our minds with unlimited examples of every conceivable image of truth, beauty, banality, eroticism, brutality, pornography, consumerism, political idea, personality, idol, and ideal. Indeed one is hard put to name anything that has not been replaced by a photographically derived image. His recycling of these images makes this astounding point before making any other. Heinecken knows the photograph is not real. He also knows that most of us still believe it is... The camera eye is lusty and insatiable, a perfect match for Heinecken's eye."

Robert Heinecken was born in 1931 in Denver, Colorado and in 1942 his family relocated to Riverside, California. After serving in the US Marine Corps, he earned a BA in 1959 from the University of California, Los Angeles, where he continued his studies, specializing in printmaking and graduating with an MFA in 1960. He founded the graduate program for photography at UCLA in 1964, where he taught until 1991. Heinecken died at age 74 in 2006 in Albuquerque, New Mexico.