SE Heller Artist Statement

Our momentum in life constantly sways between two extremes: order and chaos. Making a form in a meaningful way and constructing it within the proportional constraints of the golden ratio is nothing new in the realm of design.  It is often an attempt to gesture toward the order side of the pendulum.

Currently, the way in which we consume and dispose of materials is chaotic and unsustainable.  The body of my work brings together people with what they have abandoned, to allow them to see afresh the natural world.  Living in urban and suburban societies, nature becomes what is outside the door – often far from the pastoral ideal of grassy slopes and bubbling streams, and more often, the concrete streets and alley ways, littered with discarded objects, after usefulness or beauty has faded in the eye of its beholder. This includes not only scraps of papers and textiles, but metals, wood, and ceramics, tossed away and left to disappear beneath or beside the unseeing footsteps of pedestrians.

I recognize the natural world around me, even what is considered “waste,” and see its potential and beauty, and create a space for it to be highlighted.  I search out these items that are not necessarily unknown, only largely ignored and devalued.  I find this world of secrets open to me while walking down a street and am amazed by the hundreds of pennies waiting to be noticed, by the sections of wires now curled into spirals, by the abandoned hardware with a fine layer of rust.  Each of these is constructed and crafted intentionally, making each a feat of design. All it takes is someone with the eyes to see beyond the surface.  These found objects, in combination with color and texture on a canvas, provide the space for them to be seen, in all their intricacy.