About the Exhibition
That Which Grows In The Dark displays a new series of Trepanier’s striking paintings executed entirely in shades of black, gray, and white. In this new body of work, she departs from her colorful and expressive style of painting to minimal, though highly detailed works that investigate the idea of honoring the abundance of life that exists in areas unseen: under the soil, in our bodies, in the cellular structures of plants. The flatness of the background contradicts yet compliments the overtly intricate detailing done with handmade egg tempera and a paintbrush of only a few hairs. While her previous works were tied together by a continuous wave through the pieces, each of these works is tied through their imagery. She draws inspiration for this series from systems within nature, and her goal is to draw viewers attention to their complexity and eloquence. The systems that she draws inspiration from include systems of nerves and systems of roots.
“This body of work is somber but hopeful, tedious but meditative, a reflection and a prediction. It is both painting and drawing, simple and complex. I seek to connect the viewer to a representation of systems large and small that are able to quietly flourish in obscurity. References to mycelium, (a network of thread-like fungus that inhabits healthy soil and serve as a “nervous system” to surrounding plants) roots, cellular structures, cilia, facia, interstitium and the like are a way to visually represent thriving in dark spaces.”
— Heide Trepanier, December 2023
About the Artist
Trepanier received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from The Art Institute of Chicago and her Masters in Fine Arts for Painting and Printmaking from Virginia Commonwealth University, where she later has held adjunct professor positions. Additionally, has earned a PhD (ABD) from The European Graduate School in Art and Critical Theory. Heide has lived and worked in Richmond, VA for most of her life. As a professional artist and teacher she is dedicated to fine arts education and the intersection of arts and community. Her community-based murals and works for various public institutions can be found city-wide. Her work has been exhibited extensively in the US and internationally. Her paintings are included in collections within US embassies throughout the world as well as the Virginia Museum of
Fine art, Richmond, VA; Speed Art Museum, Louisville, KY; and UNLV Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art, Las Vegas, NV. She has received multiple accolades, including the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant (2011), VMFA Professional Fellowships (2009 and 2002), and The Theresa Pollak Fine Art Award (2004). Currently, the artist lives and works in Richmond, VA.