Heather Aston




Paintings / Mixed Media

Paintings / Mixed Media

“I have always been drawn to organic forms and to bringing that imprint into our lives.”

HEATHER ASTON, Canadian printmaker/painter, works out of the Dundarave Print Workshop on Granville Island and her home studio in Vancouver, BC, Canada. She also teaches printmaking courses and workshops in local communities, studios, schools and other educational institutions.

Over the years as an artist, she has developed her own techniques to construct a richly coloured, seductive and energetic landscape for her monotypes, etchings and paintings. She focuses on the organic world of plants, revealing life’s passages as intimate and surprising.

Upcoming Exhibitions and Courses for 2016

Places, Traces + Marks
Heather Aston, Sharole Brown,
Gail Fromson + Wendy Morosoff Smith
Dundarave Print Workshop + Gallery, 1640 Johnston Street, Granville Island, Vancouver, BC
September 12 – October 2, 2016
Opening Reception: Thursday September 15, 6–9pm

Artists strive to make sense of the world around them by making images that record and interpret their journeys of observation and experience. In this exhibition four artists working in the medium of printmaking explore the reciprocal relationship between the external; journey and place and the internal; memory and emotion.

“Waiting to Hatch”
Monotype, relief print, hand colouring, chine collé

“Waiting to Root”
Monotype, relief print, hand colouring, chine collé

Artist statement: Places, Traces + Marks
I have been confined to my home the last two summers while healing from two operations—the latest a hip replacement. As a result I chose to make prints for this show at home without access to a press. A birdcage became the main element of my sense of place. I carved it as a relief image and the objects trapped inside represent my confinement within the household. These are liftprint monotypes. I have hand coloured them, printed the birdcage in relief on top and then used chine colle as a last step in the process.

Monotypes: The Painterly Print
Dundarave Print Workshop + Gallery, 1640 Johnston Street, Granville Island, Vancouver, BC
October 25 – December 6, 2016
Tuesday evenings 7 to 10pm
$275 plus $8 for in class use of inks and glue
9 participants maximum
Please contact Dundarave Print Workshop to register
Phone: 604.689.1650
Email: info@dundaraveprintworkshop.com

The excitement of transformation and discovery is inherent in this printmaking media and is sure to inspire and fascinate participants. They will explore both watercolour and oil-based monotypes along with monotype techniques such as chine collé, liftprints and layering. Students are introduced to different papers, materials and the experience of working in a studio atmosphere. They receive individual attention regarding drawing, painting, and composition and learn to print using a manual press. The course will open new possibilities for expression. There is discussion and class critiques throughout. Suitable for any level and a good introduction to the Print Studio and Practice.

Upcoming Exhibitions and Courses for 2014

Monotypes: The Painterly Print
Malaspina Printmakers Studio, Granville Island, BC
January 6 – 27, 2014
Monday evenings 6 to 9pm
Please contact MPS to register 604.688.1724

This printmaking process is one that involves transformation and discovery.

In this 4 week course the students will explore making oil-based monotypes while learning other printmaking techniques such as liftprint and chine collé. Along with theses techniques, students will be introduced to different papers, materials, and the experience of working in a studio atmosphere. The course will open new possibilities for expression while exploring colour, form, different techniques, and line. There will be demonstrations, discussion, and critiques throughout.

$240 for members ($264 for nonmembers)

6 participants maximum

There is a creative spontaneity in the painterly process of making monotypes.

Preparing a monotype

Preparing a monotype with
oil-based inks
Photo: Andrea Taylor

Shores Under the Sky
The University Women’s Club at Hycroft
1489 Mcrae Avenue, Vancouver, BC
January, 8 – 31, 2014

Opening reception: Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014 6:30–8pm

A two person exhibition with Rina Pita of monotypes and mixed media paintings of atomospheric landscapes of the BC Coast. Layers of time and history are found in these images. The ocean engulfs, covers over, then exposes the forces of life and our history with the West Coast.

Between the Shores

Oil Monotype Chine Collé Diptych

Artists for Kids
North Vancouver School District
810 W 21st St, North Vancouver, BC
February 17, 24 and March 3, 2014

We are excited to announce an upcoming Enrichment Program with local artist Heather Aston. Select Grade Four students from across North Vancouver will attend a three-day pullout program with Heather and art specialist teacher Kory Bogen to investigate painting, printmaking, and mixed media art-making. It is sure to be an exciting and inspiring program! www.artists4kids.com

Artists for Kids
There is No Still Life
Heather Aston
A solo exhibition of new monotypes and etchings
March 5 – 30, 2014
Dundarave Print Gallery, Granville Island, Vancouver, BC
Opening reception: Thursday, March 6, 2014 6–8pm
Parrots, Pencils and Things That Grow Together – the Harmonious Still Life

Oil Monotype Chine Collé Diptych

Monotype: The Painterly Print (PRNT w119)
Vancouver Island School of Art, Victoria, BC
March 29 + 30, 2014 10am – 5pm
Please contact VISA to register 250.380.3500

Discover the painterly qualities of monotype prints in this weekend workshop. The monotype, a type of printmaking made by drawing or painting on a smooth surfaces such as Plexiglas, is a process that is inherently spontaneous and creative as end results are hard to plan and predict. The name “monotype” refers to the fact that a unique print is produced with each pass through the press. Using oil-based inks, as well as lift prints, stencils, found objects and chine collé techniques, you will progress through a series of steps that will open new possibilities for expression. You will receive individual attention regarding drawing, painting and composition, and learn to pull prints from the Plexiglas to paper using a manual press. Workshop will also include discussion of papers as well as group critiques.

Tuition: $200.00 (12 hrs)
Material Fee: $50 (all materials included)
Butterfly Amaryllis

Oil Monotype Chine Collé

In Wait: a collaborative by 7 members of the full circle art collective
First Exhibition: February 15 – March 15, 2014
The Act Gallery, Maple Ridge, BC
Opening Reception: Saturday, February 15, 2014 2–4pm
September 2014
The Burnaby Art Gallery, Burnaby, BC

The “In Wait” project is probably one of the most exciting projects that I have ever been involved in. Over 200 (12″ × 12″ × 1.625″) mixed media works have been produced collaboratively from September 2010 to August 2013 between 7 artists in the full circle art collective. Inspired by the story of Penelope in Homer’s Odyssey we asked ourselves “who are we when we wait?”

I dislike waiting as I feel it is an unproductive state where precious time is wasted.

Mixed media works

Mixed media works on paper mounted on cradle box and archivally varnished 12″ × 12″ × 1.625″

It is as if when we wait, we do not live in the present and the activities in waiting are disposable or perhaps a mere means to an end. My late Mother who, during her joyful and productive life, engaged in activities such as knitting, needle point, gardening, and an endless array of other passions, all to satisfy her energetic zest for life. As she slowly faded into the last few years of her life, some of these activities took on a different meaning.

My collaborative process through the “In Wait” project explores activities that once were a joy but that age has degraded into mere chores, but comfortable things to do while “In Wait” for the inevitable, which is often unmentionable to most of us.

Sewing, knitting playing solitaire, these activities are the themes that dominate my drawings as I interpret, weave and layer them into the communal works, reflecting on the complex nature of waiting.

The story: In Homer’s Odyssey, Penelope, wife of Odysseus, finds herself besieged by suitors during her husband’s long absence. In order to avoid making a decision regarding matrimony, she announces she must weave a shroud before she can wed again. Penelope weaves during the day and unravels her work during the night, thus never completing the shroud and allowing her to find a resolution in waiting.

The project is a contemplative response to our personal experiences and the shared communal psyche as we have examined an ordinary part of life: the ubiquitous act of waiting. We have worked on these images individually and collaboratively as the majority of these works have been passed on to others to complete. During the 3 years that we have been working on this project we have created approximately over 200 pieces!

The first exhibition of In Wait will open at the Maple Ridge Art Gallery, Maple Ridge, BC on Saturday, February 15, 2014 from 2–4pm.

Room magazine published an article on the project in their 2013 Summer issue. See Room for the article.