May Heathen starts to develop an interest in visual expression from an early age, following in her mother’s footsteps, as her imagination proves to be her best friend. She grows up in an environment where being a girl is not something to be proud of and it imprints on to her internal visual world up to a point where artistic expression becomes the only sanctuary and safe haven. She discovers Salvador Dalì, Francisco Goya and Francis Bacon and becomes fascinated with the deviations of the human mind. At the center of her research gets carefully placed the female, androgynous sometimes but never male. As May grows so do her girls as they become her self portraits and means of communication with the outside world and her work can be viewed as an open diary for the viewer to read and interpret freely.

As a self taught artist May explores various mediums and techniques and eventually chooses acrylics as her drug of choice. Her work is figurative with preference for portrait and holds focus on the female world as she hones her skills with research of the old masters’ techniques and also contemporary artists.

She exhibits publically for the first time in 2008 in Berlin with the Infantellina Contemporary Gallery in their group show “18 x 18 – 18 Artists for 18th October”. Soon follows her first solo show “Carnival 23” in her hometown Ljubljana, Slovenia, at the AKC Metelkova Mesto (an alternative culture centre that developed on a former army barracks compound when it was squatted in and taken over by a group of underground artists back in the 90’s). Both exhibitions are an important milestone for May. She then moves her life and art practice to Italy where she goes on to successfully exhibit in various locations, Rome and Milan included. Her work has been published by Out Of Step Books through their Inspirational Art Books series.

For exhibition history and list of publications please see below.

May Heathen inizia a interessarsi alle arti visive sin da piccola, seguendo le orme di sua madre, trovando nell’immaginazione la sua migliore amica. Cresce in un ambiente dove essere una ragazza non è qualcosa di cui andare fiera e questo le si imprime nel suo mondo interno, al punto tale che l’espressione artistica diventa il solo suo santuario e unico rifugio. Scopre le opere di Salvador Dalì, Francisco Goya e Francis Bacon, diventando ossessionata dalle deviazioni della mente umana. Nel centro della sua ricerca viene accuratamente posizionata la femmina, a volte androgina, ma mai l’uomo. Come cresce May così crescono anche le sue ragazze diventando i suoi autoritratti, il suo metodo di comunicazione con il mondo esterno. Le sue opere possono essere viste come un diario aperto, che l’osservatore può leggere ed interpretare a proprio piacimento.

Come artista autodidatta May esplora diversi mezzi e tecniche per poi cimentarsi nel suo vero amore, l’acrilico. Il suo lavoro è figurativo, con preferenza per il ritratto e con il mondo femminile come tema principale. Continua ad imparare e perfezionare le sue abilità artistiche imparando gli insegnamenti dei vecchi maestri come quelli degli artisti contemporanei.

May espone pubblicamente per la prima volta nel 2008 a Berlino, nella collettiva “18 x 18 – 18 Artists for 18th October” presso la galleria Infantellina Contemporary. A breve segue la sua prima personale nella sua città natale Ljubljana (Slovenia): “Carnival 23” viene presentata all’interno di AKC Metelkova Mesto, centro culturale alternativo che si sviluppò in un complesso di caserme militari abbandonate, quando nei primi anni 90 un gruppo di artisti underground lo occupò abusivamente, per poi prenderne la proprietà. Le due esposizioni pietre miliari importanti per May. Di seguito si trasferisce in Italia dove continua ad esporre in diversi luoghi, Milano e Roma comprese. Il suo lavoro è stato pubblicato da Out Of Step Books tramite la loro serie Inspirational Art Books.

Per lo storico delle mostre e la lista delle pubblicazioni vedere di seguito.

SOLO EXHIBITIONS || MOSTRE SOLISTE

2015 – “Miss May presents: O.bsessive C.ompulsive D.issorder”, Spazioporpora Gallery, Milano (Italy)

2013 – “Miss May presents: DASHING DARLINGS”, D-sotto club, Trieste (TS- Italy)

2012 – “NOTTE DELLE CANDELE”, Shindy Club, Bassano del Grappa (VI – Italy)

2012 – “Miss May presents: THE BLACK CHERRY SESSIONS”, KoboShop, Udine (UD – Italy)

2012 – “VENICE VAMPIRE & SEPOLCRO ZERO present FROZEN AUTUMN live”, Revolver Club, San Donà di Piave (VE – Italy)

2011 – “VENICE VAMPIRE Goth party::chapter III.”, Revolver Club, San Donà di Piave (VE – Italy)

2010  – “Lillyen’s Birthday Party”, Caffè Carducci, Monfalcone (GO – Italy), curated by Paolo Posarelli for Project MAAD – Music And Art Dialogues by ArtCorner in collaboration with  L’angolo Maritani

2010 – “Miss May in rassegna” – semi-permanent exhibition, Visintin Mobili showroom, Monfalcone (GO – Italy), curated by May

2009  – “Paranoica Androica”, Bar Galleria, Monfalcone (GO – Italy), curated by Alessandro Lanza for DobbiaLab Laboratori Creativi

2009  – “Carnival 23”, AKC Metelkova Mesto (Club Tiffany & Club Monokel), Ljubljana (Slovenia),  curated by Jernej Škof for  Zavod PinkKlip

GROUP EXHIBITIONS || MOSTRE COLLETTIVE

2019 – “Coaster Show”, Out Of Step Gallery, Eugene (OR, USA)

2019 – “ARTBOX.PROJECT Zurich 1.0″ during Swiss Art Expo, SBB event hall, Zurich (Switzerland)

2017 – “THE ARTBOX.PROJECT Basel 1.0″ during Basel artweeks, Euroairport Luminator event platform, Basel (Switzerland)

2014 – “Strofe dipinte di jazz”, Lakes of Romans d’Isonzo (GO – Italy), curated by Gianluca Doria for Liberatorio d’arte Fulvio Zonch

2014 – “Da Donna a Donna presenta: “La Collina” di Andrea Delogu e Andrea Cedrola” , Monfalcone (GO – Italy), curated by Laura Bianchini

2011 – “4th International TATTOO EXPO TRIESTE”, Ex Pescheria – Salone degli incanti, Trieste (Italy)

2011 – “Summerlab”, Dobbia (Staranzano GO – Italy), music and art festival, curated by Gabriele Varacchi

2010 – “Medea, Antigone ed altre cattive ragazze / Medea, Antigone and other bad girls”, Casa Internazionale delle Donne / International House of Women, Rome (Italy), curated by Linda Filacchione and Marina Zatta

2010 – “IMPRINTing”, SeiComeSei caffè, Monfalcone (GO – Italy), duo show with artist Riccardo Codiglia, curated by  Alessandro Lanza for Progetto MAAD – Music And Art Dialogues by ArtCorner

2009 – “Imprint”, Alberto Delbianco showroom, Staranzano (GO – Italy),  duo show with artist Riccardo Codiglia

2009 – “Strofe dipinte di jazz”, Laghi di Romans d’Isonzo (GO – Italy), curated by Gianluca Doria for Liberatorio d’arte Fulvio Zonch

2009 – “GalleriArt Presents the Second Edition (2008/09)”, Bar Galleria, Monfalcone (GO – Italy), curated by Alessandro Lanza for DobbiaLab Laboratori Creativi

2008 – “Trieste Tattoo Expo 2008”, Molo IV,  Trieste (Italy)

2008 – “18 x 18 – 18 Artists for 18th October”, Infantellina Contemporary gallery, Berlin (Germany),  curated by Charlotte Stein

PUBLICATIONS || PUBBLICAZIONI

2016 – “Black & White: Volume Three”, by Jinxi Caddel for Out Of Step Books

2016 – “Enchanted: Fairy Tales, Folktales and Fables Artistically Explored”, by Jinxi Caddel for Out Of Step Books 

2015 – “Pandaemonium: Devils,Demons and Monsters”, by Jinxi Caddel for Out Of Step Books 

2015 – “Meows And Roars Of Inspiration:  The Cat Art Project”,   by Jinxi Caddel for Out Of Step Books 

2013 – “Pelicula Succubus Incubus”, self-published via blurb.com