When I was a young artist, I studied with several master artists and weavers, became a professional weaver, won awards, exhibited in and sold from galleries, and did numerous commissions. The work went to corporate offices, museums and private collections throughout the country. Now, after a quarter century of an unexpected, but nonetheless wonderful, career in academia and government, I am deeply grateful to have the time and resources to devote myself fully to the studio, my true home, and to develop further the work started then. This time concentrating solely on tapestry.
I choose hand-woven tapestry to do art because I believe tapestry, with its inherent tactile sensuousness and its implication of timelessness, simultaneously engages the senses and the intellect. For hundreds of years, tapestries have been drawing in, enveloping and fascinating viewers as few other mediums can.
My inspiration comes from the geometry and rhythms of the natural world, from architectural references, and from other artists, especially 20th century expressionist and abstract painters. Color, with its myriad contrasts and implied emotions, is usually a central design aspect in my work. I hand-dye all my wool and frequently use dozens ofcolors and color gradations in a single piece. Recent work has included black, white and neutrals because I find them most effective in optical art, a real fascination. I revel in and feel awed by the constructive, additive process of weaving. Watching the line by line, color by color, almost magical transformation of an idea into an image -- a contemporary tapestry -- is thrilling. My expressive goal is to excite similar enjoyment for the viewer or owner of my work.
Watermelon Gallery, Cedar Crest, New Mexico. 2011- 2016 (gallery closed).
Studied Textiles, Fiber, Weaving, Dyeing, and Design with:
James Bassler James Koehler
Joan Baxter Michelle Lester
Elizabeth Buckley Jennifer Moore
Allan Fannin Alice Parrot
Lydia van Gelder Robin Reider
Trude Guermonprez Pearl Sunrise
Nancy Kozikowski Lucy Ann Warner
Bachelor of Arts. (BA) Psychology. University of New Mexico. Albuquerque, NM
Master of Arts. (MA) Geography. University of New Mexico. Albuquerque, NM
Master of Library Science. (MLS). University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
Experience and Life Work
2006 – present. Owner, Heather Gallegos-Rex Weaving Studio located in Sandia Park, New Mexico USA.
1980 – 2006. Held increasingly responsible leadership positions in libraries, retiring in 2006 as Deputy New Mexico State Librarian. Although maintaining my artistic pursuits during those years, the work produced was not appropriate for public exhibition.
1974 - 1979. Owner, Heather Rex Handweaver studio located at 1504 Park Ave, SW in Albuquerque, NM and at 9339 Guadalupe Trail, NW, Albuquerque, NM.
1974 - 1979. The work was represented by Mariposa Gallery, Albuquerque, New Mexico; Crafts Incredible, Prairie Village, Kansas; and an interior design store in Walnut Creek, California.
Two Person Shows
2013 ° The Watermelon Gallery. Cedar Crest, NM. September, 2013.
2012 ° The Watermelon Gallery. Cedar Crest, NM. May, 2012.
Selected Recent / Future Shows
2019 Sangre de Cristo Arts and Conference Center. Pueblo, CO. (juried). Representing the West: A New Frontier.
February 2, 2019 - May 6, 2019.
2018 Albuquerque Museum. Albuquerque, NM. ArtsThrive. 28th Annual Art Exhibition and Benefit (juried). October
20, 2018 - December 2, 2018.
2018 Paa-Ko Fine Artists Art Show (invited artist). Sandia Park, NM. October 6 - 7, 2018.
2018 Fuller Lodge Art Center, Los Alamos, NM. Tapestry as Exploration and Innovation. June 29, 2018 - July 28,
2016 Fuller Lodge Art Center. Los Alamos, NM. June 17, 2016 - July 30, 2016.
2016 Old Martina's Hall. Taos, NM. April 2016 - November 2016.
2015 University of New Mexico Hospital. Albuquerque, NM. December 7, 2015 - February 19, 2016.
2014 with TapestryFive at Placitas Artists Series. Placitas, NM. October 1 - October 31, 2014.
2014 with TapestryFive at The Watermelon Gallery. Cedar Crest, NM. September 6 - October 3, 2014.
2014 with TapestryFive at New Mexico State Land Office. Santa Fe, NM. July 2- July 31, 2014.
2014 with TapestryFive at Black Mesa Winery and Gallery. Taos, NM. May 23 - June 20, 2014.
2014 with TapestryFive at Studio 17. Santa Fe, NM. March 21 - April 17, 2014.
2013 Las Tejedoras Guild Show. Ghost Ranch Museum. Abiquiu, NM. Sept. 18 – Nov. 17, 2013.
2013 Las Tejedoras and Las Arañas Tapestry Groups joint show, Southside Library, Santa Fe, NM. October, 2013.
2013 Las Tejedoras and Las Arañas Tapestry Groups joint show. Macey Center, Socorro, NM. August, 2013.
2013 Las Tejedoras Tapestry Show. Southside Branch Library. Santa Fe, NM. October 2013.
2011 Art Through the Loom Annual Show. Ghost Ranch Museum, Abiquiu, NM.
Karen Wray Fine Art Gallery. Las Tejedoras Tapestry Group Show. Los Alamos, NM. August, 2011.
Back to Basics. Juried show. Fuller Lodge Art Center. Los Alamos, NM. June, 2011.
2010 Las Tejedoras Annual show. Ghost Ranch Museum. Abiquiu, NM.
2010 A Fiber Arts Medley. Juried show. Convento y Misión. Española, NM.
2009 Art through the Loom annual show. Ghost Ranch Museum. Abiquiu, NM.
2008 Española Valley Fiber Arts Center members show. Piedra Lumbre Visitors Center, Abiquiu, NM.
1976 Honorable Mention. New Mexico Crafts Biennial. Museum of International Folk Art/ Museum of New
Mexico. Juried show. Santa Fe, NM.
1974 Best of Show. Textiles New Mexico. Juried show. Albuquerque Museum, Albuquerque, NM.
The Magazine. October 2018. p. 34.
Albuquerque Journal. Dec. 27, 2015. Life in New Mexico. Pictorial Tapestries. Review and photo.
Round the Roundhouse. Vol. 26, Issue 6. June 23-July 20, 2014. p. 23. photo.
Rio Grande Sun. July 5, 2012. Arts Section. Rio Grande Sun. July 16, 2009. Arts Section. Cover photo.
Rio Grande Sun. Oct. 28, 2010. Arts Section.
Rio Grande Sun. July 15, 2010. Arts Section.
American Tapestry Alliance.
High Desert Tapestry Alliance. Santa Fe, New Mexico