Akin to Magical Realism, Julie Heffernan’s lush self-portraiture utilizes a myriad of art historical references to present a sensual interior narrative, a self-allegory whose half- hidden political agenda is the literal background of the paintings. The dark, Grimm fairy tale-like undercurrent transforms her aristocratic, operatic portraits into a contemporary vanitas or memento mori, acting as both a stylized fantasy and a Bosch-like warning.
Heffernan (b. 1956, Illinois) received her MFA from Yale School of Art (CT), and has been exhibiting widely for the past two decades. Selected exhibitions include those at The Korean Biennial (Korea), Weatherspoon Art Gallery (NC), Tampa Museum Of Art (FL), Knoxville Museum Of Art (TN), Columbia Museum Of Art (SC), Milwaukee Art Museum (WI), The New Museum (NY), The Norton Museum (FL), The American Academy Of Arts And Letters (NY), Kohler Arts Center (WI), The Palmer Museum Of Art (PA), National Academy Of Art (NY), Mcnay Art Museum (TX), Herter Art Gallery (MA), Mint Museum (NC) and Virginia Museum of Fine Art (VA), Oklahoma City Museum of Art (OK) among numerous others.