Heather Rasmussen

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Artist Statement

I am a studio artist. I make sculptures and photograph them alongside pre-existing objects and figures.

The works in my current Untitled series have some qualities of still-lifes, but are also documents of deterioration, movement and experimentation, using my body alongside other objects. I’ve made plaster casts of my feet and legs and used them in the photographs and video as stand-ins for myself, or as dance partners.

I began to include fruits and vegetables in the work, as familiar objects with unusual forms – either overgrown, mutant, or molding. I started to choreograph myself alongside of these objects, and eventually in some cases allow them to take my place. The interaction between my body, representations of my body, and the other attendant objects create composed and contradictory images that are often erotic but awkward. When creating these scenes I allow myself to be surprised by the things around me. A vegetable echoes a limb, something cumbersome becomes sexual, something inanimate becomes invigorated.

I play with the scale of prints to achieve changes in meaning. I use blown-up photographs of textures of the objects I work with as backdrops to make things in the foreground look impossibly small or precious. I’m interested in what it is to have a body as a dancer and a woman and what it is to live among a messy accumulation of things. Decay, movement, surrealism, history, scale, play, metaphor, and substitution are the tools I use to articulate my ideas about these subjects.



b. 1982, Lives and works in Los Angeles


M.F.A. 2007
Photography and Media   California Institute of the Arts

B.A 2004
Studio Art, University of California, Irvine

Solo Exhibitions

Sculptures, Photographs and Movement, Weingart Gallery at Occidental College, Los Angeles
Bruised Fruit, The California Museum of Photography, Riverside

HITO: San Pedro/Port of Los Angeles/Port of Long Beach, Angels Gate Cultural Center, San Pedro

Heather Rasmussen: Work and work, 3001 Gallery, USC Roski School of Fine Arts, Los Angeles

HITO, Sandroni Rey Project Container, Sandroni Rey Gallery, Los Angeles
ship happens, Light & Wire Gallery (online), Los Angeles

Group Exhibitions

SUBJECT, Lancaster Museum of Art and History, Lancaster (forthcoming)
Obfuscate: The Art of Camouflage and Hiding in Plain Sight, Durden and Ray, Los Angeles (forthcoming)

20/20vision, Christophe Guye Galerie, Zurich
Swingers WKND / Works by Artist Couples, curated by Tribble & Mancenido, Brooklyn
The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, Fraenkel Gallery, San Francisco

Horizon, Quint Gallery, La Jolla
Input/Output, University of Cincinnati, Sycamore Gallery, Cincinnati
Trouble with the Index, The California Museum of Photography, Riverside, Curated by Joanna Szupinska-Myers

Falling from Great Heights, Stephen Cohen Gallery, Los Angeles
Fruitland, at Photoville, Brooklyn.

Horizon Variations, CCNY, New York
Facture, Airplane Gallery in Bushwick, New York

Exposure: Matt Keegan, Katie Paterson, Heather Rasmussen, The Art Institute of Chicago
LACEs Annual Benefit Art Auction 2011, Limited Edition Artist Portfolio, LA Mart, Los Angeles
Open Daybook, Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions, Hollywood
Tuesday, Mixed Greens, New York, Curated by mr. & mrs, amani olu.
Curious Silence, The Brand Library Art Gallery, Glendale

31 Women in Art Photography at Affirmation Arts Foundation, New York, Curated by Charlotte Cotton and Jon Feinstein.
Outside the Project, with Workspace & RAID Projects, Los Angeles

Sign/Co-Sign, Light & Wire Gallery public art bus stop installation at Miami Basel, Miami
Lustige Gruppenausstellung MIT Party, Gallery 533, Los Angeles, Curated by Lucrecia Roa and Ulrich Wulff
Light & Wire Gallery @ Circus Gallery, Circus Gallery, Hollywood
Curious Silence, SOIL, Seattle

Anonymous Drawings N.9, Blutenweiss, Berlin
Disastrous: Heather Rasmussen, A Solo Show, Sea and Space Explorations, Los Angeles
Salty Dog Bites the Hand, Angels Gate Cultural Center, San Pedro. Curator Allan Sekula
Some indispensable concepts for understanding this beautiful exhibition, The Confederacy of Creative Ephemera, Circus Gallery, Hollywood

Fast Forward, Brentwood Country Mart, Brentwood. Curated by Simon Watson.
For Ever, at 915 Mateo, Los Angeles, Curated by Eungie Joo and Clara Kim

GLAMFA, Cal State Long Beach, Long Beach

Open Show 2004, Gallery 825, Los Angeles. Curated by James Elaine
or,  Banning Community Center, Wilmington


2011 Curious Silence, The Brand Library Art Gallery, Glendale, with Renèe Martin

2009 Curious Silence, SOIL, Seattle, with Renèe Martin

Teaching, Artist Talks & Lectures

Artist led walkthrough of “Perfect Likeness,” The Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, August 20
Artist Talk, The California Museum of Photography, Riverside, February 28

Artist Lecture, USC Intermediate Photography, April 17

Artist Talk, The Art Institute of Chicago, Morton Auditorium, October 19
Guest Instructor at USC, Intermediate Photography, October 4
Artist Lecture, Fine Arts: Sculpture and New Genres, Otis College of Art & Design
Instructor, Holga Inspire Workshops and Critique with Nina T. Becker, The Icon Photographic Lab, Los Angeles

Artist Lecture, Fine Arts: Sculpture and New Genres, Otis College of Art & Design

Teaching Assistant for Allan Sekula, California Institute of the Arts 


2014      The Foundation for Contemporary Art Emergency Grant (December)

2007      Dean’s Reserve Fund Award, School of Art, California Institute of the Arts

2004      Excellence in Studio Art Award at UC Irvine, Studio Residency Program at UC Irvine

Public Collections

The Art Institute of Chicago

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art


20/20vision, Sturm & Drang Publisher, Zurich, July 2015, p.93-98 (cat)

Compile V.1, Artist book, Edition of 3, January 2015

Heather Rasmussen: ship happens 2, Los Angeles, March 2013 (cat)

Earle, David P., Open Daybook, Mark Batty Publisher, New York, November 2010

Schmidt, Petra, Unfolded, Birkhäuser Verlag, Basel, September 2009, p.130-131 + cover

Heather Rasmussen: ship happens, Los Angeles, March 2009 (cat)

Anonymous Drawings N.9, Blutenweiss, Berlin, Germany, December 2008 (cat)


Denhoed, Andrea, “The Artist As A Lonely Hunter”, The New Yorker, August 11, 2015 (img)

Morgenthaler, Daniel, “Twenty Wins,” Tages Anzeiger (German), July 2, 2015 (img)

Baker, Kenneth, “An antidote to irony at Fraenkel Gallery”, SFGate, June 12, 2015, (img)

Kelsey, Colleen, “What the Heart Wants”, Interview Magazine, June 2015 (img)

Chun, Kimberly, “Lonely Looks: ‘Obsessive, peculiar, funny’ artists at new Fraenkel show”, The San Francisco Chronicle, June 4, 2015, p.14

Indrisek, Scott, “Art, Lovers: Romantic Teamwork in Bushwick’s “SwingersWKND”, June 4, 2015

“Vanity”, Musée Magazine, no. 11, Section curated by Catherine Opie, April 2015, p. 294-5 (img)

David, Soleil, “Alumna Heather Rasmussen’s Bruised Fruit at California Museum of Photography”, 24700, blog.calarts.edu, March 16, 2015

Cavanaugh, Craig, “A Zucchini Save Art Exhibit,” A San Diego Story, September 11, 2014 (img)

Myers, Holly, “Perspectives in Photography from Falling From Great Heights”, The Los Angeles Times, April 26, 2013, D16

Stromberg, Matt, “From Los Angeles. Falling From Great Heights”, Artpractical.com, April 22, 2013 (img)

Tarley, Phil, “Cohen Exhibition: Falling From Great Heights”, Fabrik Magazine, Issue 20, p.68-73 (img)

McCullough, Danielle, “Looking at Los Angeles | Heather Rasmussen: Cataclysmic Collections”, art21 blog, January 10, 2013 (img)

Weinstein, Michael, “Review: Exposure/Art Institute of Chicago” NewCity Art, January 3, 2012 (img)

Green, Tyler, “3rd of May: Artists and their sources”, Modern Art Notes on ARTINFO.com, October 18, 2011

Green, Tyler, “Heather Rasmussen”, 3rd of May, Blog, October 18, 2011 (img)

Steciw, Kate, “Go Here! Do This!”, The Photography Post, December 1, 2010, http://thephotographypost.com/blogs/post/kate/go-here-do-this-2271 (img)

Mason, Shana, “Humble Art Foundation Launches Manual Transmission Miami at NADA”, Miami New Times, December 4, 2010. Donoghue, Katy, “31 Women in Art Photography”, Whitewall Magazine, March 4, 2010.

Walker, Benjamin, “More for Art Weekend”, WNYC Culture, March 5, 2010.

Heather Rasmussen, Women in Photography, wipnyc.org, November, New York, 2009