July 18 An Evening with Jay Heikes
Program begins at 6:00 PM; cash bar opens at 5 PM

Join us for a special evening with Riley CAP Gallery artist Jay Heikes.

Through strange and unexpected pairings of materials, Jay Heikes questions the relationships among the matter of the universe. The son of a chemist, Heikes is particularly fascinated by alchemy, the medieval precursor to modern chemistry, which proposed that transforming one substance into another is possible, in not always explicable.

Heikes' Minor Planets are crafted from bismuth--element number 83 on the periodic table--and crushed copper sheeting. The artist again exploits chemistry to create these orbs: while bismuth oxidizes quickly, taking on a pink tinge when exposed to air, copper's corrosion is gradual. Heikes accelerates this process by applying a salt anf vinegar solution to the sheet metal. As the sculptures age, flakes of salt that have absorbed the oxidized copper's bluish-green hue fall to the floor. Heikes accepts the unpredictability inherent in the sculptures' deterioration, explaining that the Minor Planets are his attempt to "do nature's work in a way that is not practiced, concise, or refined."

At 6:00 PM, the free event begins in the Omaha World-Herald Gallery (pavilion gallery 14) and features a performance of Heikes' "Music for Minor Planets"--a series of drawings printed on sheet music that can be interpreted acoustically, as abstract musical notations and vibrations. The work will be performed by TAPEnsemble, a University of Nebraska Omaha-based performer-composer collective utilizing electronic and acoustic instruments to perform music that defies traditional boundaries.

At 6:30 PM, the event moves into the Abbott Lecture Hall, where Heikes will sit down with Joslyn's Phil Willson Curator of Contemporary Art, Karin Campbell and talk about the work in his Riley CAP Gallery exhibition.

What's pictured: Jay Heikes (American, born 1975), Orb, 2017, oxidized copper, diameter: 14 inches, Courtesy of the artist and Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York and Aspen, © Jay Heikes. Photo credit: Jason Wyche.

The Riley Contemporary Artists Project (CAP) Gallery exhibitions are supported by Douglas County, Catherine & Terry Ferguson, Sara Foxley, and Polina and Bob Schlott.

A 500-square-foot space in the Scott Pavilion suite of galleries, the Riley CAP Gallery showcases nationally- and internationally-recognized artists, as well as emerging talent, selected by Joslyn curators. A rotating schedule of intimate, carefully focused exhibitions will examine how artists engage with the world and respond to the issues that challenge them creatively, bringing new perspectives on contemporary art to Nebraska.

Riley CAP Gallery artists are invited to Joslyn for lectures and other public programs, giving audiences the opportunity to gain insight into creative processes and contribute to an expanded dialogue about new art. The first Joslyn gallery dedicated exclusively to living artists, the Riley CAP Gallery represents an important step in making contemporary art an even more integral component of the Museum’s exhibition programming.