video + performance
heather sheehan video + performance
suffocating skin, 2008
an action not to be repeated

Alone in my atelier with my dog, I drenched an expanse of knit nylon textile in petrolium jelly. I rolled my unclothed body in the greased textile and took these self portraits to document my actions. I remained in this cocoon until the dog began to bark. She was aware of the danger and panicked before I. My body was going into shock. With no pores open to breath, my skin had begun to suffocate like a water bird on an oil slicked beach.

A hot bath with dish washing liquid was my escape.

photos: self portrait

heather sheehan video + performance
being still sein, 2008

Goal of this performance was to create an atmosphere through consciousness rather than action, to explore the territory, the fine space between boundaries of body and world, exploring the semi-permeable membrane of privacy within social existence.

photos: Ivo Ringe
heather sheehan video + performance
'plan for being still sein', 2008

a performative installation
a non performative performance
a happening where nothing happens
passive action
a sit-in, sleep-in
passing time
each & every video, Heather Sheehan, 2003
original music: Johannes Heinen, 2003
camera/editing/imaging: Jan Höhe

'Nameless sound in the black emptiness of space.
Eternity, as a background in which the cosmos is perpetually reborn. A tiny, almost silent object shines out of the darkness and begins to grow, spinning a slow spiral path towards us. The ever expanding body reveals itself to be an undefined life form,
an elemental, organic being. Our focus is increasingly drawn towards the center of the body until we submerge completely through the outer skin, escorted by heightened musical tension. There, inside, an other, new being takes form, floating briefly in rosy, naked triumph before drifting out of our sight. Left behind, an amorphous structure, turning away, eclipsing from view. Nameless sound in the black emptiness of space. An end, a beginning. For each and every.'
Johannes Heinen, Cologne 2003
heather sheehan video + performance
each & every video installation
Trinitatiskirche Köln, 2005
single opening video, 1999

"...Sheehan confronts us with artificial and injured, manipulated and changeable parts, their origin or future purpose being at once strange and familiar. With tubes, needles and clamps attached, they are pampered, taken care of and left to develop into something we can not fathom. In cool laboratory atmosphere, they awaken motherly instincts: will they survive, or will they remain dependent upon the apparatus and constant care, kept in services of research? These are the questions not only scientists are concerned with but which fill us all with a mixture of enthusiasm and fear.
... Sheehan herself appears as Prof. Dr. Nurse. In her grotesque performance, she acquaints us with her research into the attempts to revive an absurd, extinct creature, the Maboutae, whose practical characteristic it is to necessitate only a single opening for all vital functions. Sheehan sarcastically caricatures odd fields of research and our amateurish ideas of the possibilities genetic technology holds, as well as the economic advantages."
Cornelia Bruninghaus Knubel, co-curator: Under the Skin
Wilhelm Lehmbruck Museum - International Center for Sculpture
heather sheehan video + performance artothek der stadtmuseum köln
single opening video
installation view, 2000
artothek der stadtmuseum köln
photo: Alistair Overbruck
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