'Mary Heilmann: Waves, Roads & Hallucinations' (film still), 2024 Artwork Mary Heilmann. Courtesy the artist, Hauser & Wirth, and 303 Gallery, New York.

Screening Room: ‘Mary Heilmann: Waves, Roads & Hallucinations’

  • Tue 23 – Thu 25 July 2024

On the occasion of the final week of ‘Mary Heilmann. Daydream Nation,’ curated by artist Gary Simmons at Hauser & Wirth 22nd street, please join us for screenings of the recently released documentary ‘Mary Heilmann: Waves, Roads & Hallucinations,’ in our amphitheater at Hauser & Wirth 18th Street.

New York based artist Mary Heilmann is one of the most influential American abstract painters of her time. Heilmann's work has been exhibited throughout the world in museums such as Dia Art Foundation, Orange County Museum, Whitney Museum of American Art, and Whitechapel Gallery. This documentary offers a visually immersive journey through the artist’s life, using rare archival material and in-studio footage to explore her mind and practice. 

Directed by Matt Creed
73 min 

Screenings will take place Tuesday – Thursday, 23 – 25 July at 7 pm in our amphitheater at Hauser & Wirth 18th Street.

This event is free; however, reservations are required. 
Click here to register.

About ‘Mary Heilmann. Daydream Nation’ curated by Gary Simmons
Curated by artist Gary Simmons, Heilmann’s friend and former student and colleague at New York’s School of Visual Arts, the exhibition celebrates her talent for distilling complex images and ideas into deceptively simple geometric forms and abstract gestural marks. Through rarely and never-before-seen works on paper from the 1970s to early 2000s, this presentation reveals how drawing functions as a form of daydreaming—of conjuring the sights, sounds and events of her past travels or her imagined future—in Heilmann’s creative process.

Heilmann is known for working across mediums and for installations which playfully combine disparate works. Reflecting on the artist’s approach to exhibition-making, ‘Daydream Nation’ brings together works on paper, ranging from watercolor studies for larger paintings to works that function as paintings on paper in their own right, alongside a selection of her ceramic sculptures and sculptural chairs to create an ambiently whimsical yet conceptually rigorous environment. Heilmann often works in series, revisiting and reimagining certain arrangements of form and color over time, as evidenced here in such recurring motifs as the chair, rosebud, spiral, wave and web. But in Heilmann’s oeuvre, repetition begets difference and from this multiplicity emerges important truths about the functions of memory and our process of translating it.

Drawing has always factored significantly into Heilmann’s practice, manifesting in a variety of forms in ‘Daydream Nation.' The exhibition features a new mural-like installation that reimagines and expands an existing work into a new form of expression. Heilmann’s seventh wall drawing to date, this installation was developed in conversation with Simmons, who frequently explores the monumental scale of this medium in his own work.

The title of this exhibition is taken from Sonic Youth’s groundbreaking album ‘Daydream Nation’ (1988), beloved by both Heilmann and Simmons. Evoking Heilmann’s longstanding interest in daydreaming as a creative exercise and the importance of travel for her in this process, it also situates her oeuvre within the culture of youthful rebellion in New York City, the California-born artist’s adopted home since 1968 and a constant source of energy and inspiration for her both personally and professionally.

About Mary Heilmann 
Influenced by 1960s counterculture, the free speech movement, and the surf ethos of her native California, Mary Heilmann ranks amongst the most influential abstract painters of her generation. Considered one of the preeminent contemporary Abstract painters, Heilmann’s practice overlays the analytical geometries of Minimalism with the spontaneous ethos of the Beat Generation, and are always distinguishable by their often unorthodox—always joyful—approach to color and form.