Since the early 1990s, von Heyl has wrestled with abstraction in her work, explaining, “I want to get abstraction to a point where it screams that it is something: a representation and a thing.” Through her painting and more recently in drawings, prints, and books, she strives to invent new forms while simultaneously drawing upon “a ferocious input of images,” as she has described her wide-ranging and often idiosyncratic inspirations, from music lyrics and comic-strip frames to art-historical masterworks. These works represent von Heyl’s first experiment with printmaking. She has not only tried her hand at a dizzying variety of techniques—lithography, screenprint, woodcut, and digital printing—but has also combined them in playful, unconventional ways, juxtaposing layers and motifs as she has done in her paintings. While each print is unique, certain motifs reappear in multiple works, exploiting the potential for replication and permutation inherent in the print process.
Gallery label from Abstract Generation: Now in Print, March 15–September 2, 2013.