Daniel HeidkampJune 11–July 26, 2014
White Columns is pleased to present a solo exhibition by the New York-based artist Daniel Heidkamp (b. 1980). Heidkamp’s exhibition takes the form of a group of related recent oil paintings each depicting New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art as seen from the grounds of Central Park. The Museum becomes a kind of backdrop, glimpsed peripherally through the foliage and trees, for Heidkamp’s quotidian scenes. Heidkamp works en plein air, painting directly in front of his subjects, an acivity that he has described as being “the central core” of his project. For Heidkamp this process is vital, enabling him “… to see my subjects unfiltered and unmediated. When painting en plein air I feel the atmosphere on my skin, I can see in every direction,” and consequently “unexpected nuances start to appear in the work. There is an adrenaline feeling that happens while working ‘live’ and that energy can translate directly into the painting. I don't use an easel, I put my canvas on the ground, in the grass or dirt, and I dig in.” Approximately half of the works in the current exhibition were painted this way, with the others developed in the studio from oil sketches made in situ.
Heidkamp is among a younger generation of artists, an informal and diverse group including Josephine Halverson, Ella Kruglyanskaya, Daniel Rios Rodriguez, Aliza Nisenbaum, and Jane Corrigan among others – who continue to interrogate the potential of representational painting. Heidkamp’s work typically
focuses on vernacular scenes drawn from his and his family’s lives, that together create a compelling image of the painter as a chronicler of modern life. (Daniel Heidkamp will have work in exhibitions this summer at Zach Feuer and Jack Hanley galleries in New York. His work was the subject of a solo exhibition at New York’s Half Gallery in 2014 and was included in ‘Ticket To Reality’ at Marlborough Chelsea alongside works by Bob Thompson, Alice Neel and Henry Taylor. White Columns presented his work at NADA, Miami in 2012.)