Jay Heikes, Music for Minor Planets, 2018

Jay Heikes, Music for Minor Planets, 2018 

Multiple. Sheet music and two elements. Limited edition of 50 with 5 APs. Signed, dated and numbered. Unpaginated (15 pages). 12.5 × 10.75 × 1.5 inches (box dimensions). Printed by Independent Press. Designed by Sprout and Ovechkin. Published by RITE Editions, San Francisco, 2018. Edition of 50. 

Curated by Apsara DiQuinzio.

Box by John DeMerritt. 


Music for Minor Planets is a boxed multiple by Jay Heikes, produced by RITE Editions, that reflects the shifting forms and poetic themes of Heikes’s art. It consists of a series of drawings printed on sheet music. The drawings can be interpreted visually as “mapping movement” (like a seismograph reading) and also acoustically, as abstract musical notations and vibrations. The exquisite drawings are an antidote to inertia and stasis.

The work of Jay Heikes will be presented in an exhibition at the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive.

February 14–April 29, 2018
Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive

Many of the objects—paintings, sculptures, and drawings—presented in this exhibition were informed by time Jay Heikes (b. 1975) spent at a residency in Marfa, Texas, in early 2017. The dry, crumbly terrain of the desert landscape and the site’s proximity to Mexico inspired his rumination and reflection on the significance of borders to our culture, a subject that has concurrently received much attention in the political sphere. The works embody the artist’s longing for transcendence amid the deluge of negative media in the wake of the presidential election.

The son of a chemist, Heikes grew up fascinated by the sense of magic inherent in scientific experimentation and discovery. This experience is apparent in his interest in alchemy and the diverse material processes embedded in his artistic practice. “I feel we’re on trend to shortchange the art object,” Heikes has said. “We’re not giving it its due and I want to challenge that a little bit.” In addition to activating a reflection on our cultural moment, the works in MATRIX 269 highlight Heikes’s commitment to the material properties of the art object, and his probing of the potential of his diverse media and subjects.

Jay Heikes / MATRIX 269 is organized by Apsara DiQuinzio, curator of modern and contemporary art and Phyllis C. Wattis MATRIX Curator, with Matthew Coleman, curatorial assistant. The MATRIX Program is made possible by a generous endowment gift from Phyllis C. Wattis and the continued support of the BAMPFA Trustees.

For more, visit BAMPFA’s website: https://bampfa.org/program/jay-heikes-matrix-269

About Jay Heikes

Yale graduate and Minneapolis-based artist Jay Heikes (b. 1975) is known for his heterogeneous practice, which mixes and reinterprets a kaleidoscopic array of media—activating stories, puns, and irony in a cyclical meditation. His most recent body of work employs his preoccupation with the philosophical tradition of alchemy. Themes of evolution and regeneration, stasis and corrosion take form in his artistic actions, recharging Heikes' previous narrative pursuits and reaffirming the notion that mutation and change are essential to the creative process.