Profile: Heather Hart (1975-)

Heather T. Hart is a visual artist who works in a variety of media including interactive and participatory Installation art, drawing, collage, and painting.

Early life

Hart was born in Seattle, Washington, to Susan Hart and Harry H. Hart III, a carpenter. Her parents met as students at an art school in Oakland, California. She grew up in North Seattle.

In 1998, Hart received a BFA from Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle, where she majored in Painting and Video. She attended the Center for African American Studies at Princeton University in New Jersey. In 2008, Hart received an MFA from Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University in New Jersey, where her focus was interdisciplinary art.

Career

Hart learned carpentry from her father at a young age. Hart uses architectural forms mixed with family and oral histories, multiple narratives, and participatory engagements as integral components in much of her creative work.

Hart’s “Rooftop Oracles” is a series of life-size rooftops, which look as though they were dropped from the sky or emerging from the ground, offer viewers an interactive experience as they climb onto and under the structures. She has created different installations in the series, and realizes her vision with the collaboration of family and friends, in a sort of raising the roof effort that involves many people working together as a community.

In 2010, Hart created the installation, “The Northern Oracle: We Will Tear the Roof Off the Mother,” at Franconia Sculpture Park in Minnesota.

In 2012, her sculptural installation, “The Eastern Oracle: We Will Tear the Roof Off the Mother,” was presented at the Brooklyn Museum as part of their Raw/Cookedseries.

“The Western Oracle: We Will Tear the Roof Off the Mother,” was an installation at Seattle Art Museum’s Olympic Sculpture Park in 2013. It included an elk-hide drum wall that was built in a tetris of rectangles as a way to sound out the ritual of the oracle. Indian-American drum maker, Joseph Seymour, provided instruction on creating the drums, with installation consultation from Cornish College furniture professor, Attila Barcha.

From May to November 2017, “Outlooks: Heather Hart” is installed at Storm King Art Center in Mountainville, New York.

Personal life

In 2012, she was diagnosed with breast cancer, which she successfully recovered from, during her first solo show at the Brooklyn Museum.

Hart currently lives and works in Brooklyn.

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