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down time by kelly heaton

Earlier this week, I had arthroscopic surgery on my left hip to repair an old injury that was becoming arthritic. This post is an evolving repository of and video loops that I’m creating during my downtime.

Kokopelli by kelly heaton

Kokopelli, 2018. Watercolor and pencil on paper, 15" x 11"

Kokopelli, 2018. Watercolor and pencil on paper, 15" x 11"

I have a mysterious relationship with the spirit Kokopelli. Six years ago, I had a series of dreams in which I saw his iconic figure: a hunchbacked spirit playing the flute and tumbling around in somersaults. I also observed that he had rays of energy coming out of his back and head, sort of like a hedgehog or an armadillo reflecting sunlight. I didn't have any waking history with Kokopelli, so it was strange to "meet" him in a dream. From time to time, he pops up when I'm not expecting him -- this time, adopting the form of a circuit in the desert. This painting depicts two astable multivibrators and a 555 timer that are daisy-chained to generate sound through a piezo disk. Initially, I didn't have an overall form in mind for the circuit. I drew it organically, staying faithful to the electrical connections, because I enjoy the nerdy brain-teaser and the process of discovering shapes in artistic circuitry. Anyway, Kokopelli appeared ... and of course he did! Kokopelli is an electrical being who plays music, similar to my other sound-generating circuits. He also heralds the beginning of Spring, so maybe winter in Virginia is nearly over. What a sign of good luck all ways around.

The power of symmetry by kelly heaton

The power of symmetry as applied to wires in an Internet service provider's warehouse. Digital photo collage, 2018. Looks like a Grotjahn painting

The power of symmetry as applied to wires in an Internet service provider's warehouse. Digital photo collage, 2018. Looks like a Grotjahn painting

Several other games with photo collage symmetry, including intriguing comparisons to Pacific Northwest art and a self-portrait of Leigh Bowery

Radio Receiver Mask by kelly heaton

Radio Receiver Mask, 2017. Wood, rope, metal wire, paint

Radio Receiver Mask, 2017. Wood, rope, metal wire, paint

Like a radio receiver, our mind picks up certain frequencies by design -- a subset of reality, based on the architecture of our senses and how we are tuned. I like to listen to a lot of different stations, especially the ones that are faint, vibrating on the edge of perception. This mask is part of my Human Electric series. It's designed after an actual circuit using a 555 timer, some simple RC circuits, a transistor, and an antenna. If you're wondering why my construction technique is primitive, there's a reason: imagine the future of our civilization if the grid were to collapse. My masks are designed to symbolize electronic identity in a post-apocalyptic world.

I'm on a chip in the clouds by kelly heaton

"I'm on a Chip in the Clouds," 2017. Watercolor and acrylic on joined paper. 31" x 37"

Here's the story of how this crazy painting came to be. It was a rainy day, and so I started in my studio with a self-portrait in which I appeared to be daydreaming --hence the colors and thoughts around my head. At some point, the sun came out. I prefer to paint in the beautiful landscape that surrounds my home... so I joined additional paper to my canvas and went outside. Lost in my thoughts and distracted by my computer, I wasn't really present in the landscape. So I encapsulated myself on a computer chip that is floating in the clouds. And now, after all, my artwork has become a digital image file that I upload to the cloud.

solar eclipse by kelly heaton

Photographs of the 2017 solar eclipse in Boyce, Virginia. These images were captured using an iPhone, a pinhole projector, and colored lenses.