Wild Scavengers and Mythological Wonder Converge in Hera’s Dreamy Mixed-Media Works

“Taking a Break From Dancing to Their Tunes,” acrylic paint, spray paint, charcoal on canvas, 35.4 x 23.6 inches. All images © Hera, courtesy of Corey Helford Gallery, shared with permission

In a poetic new series of works on canvas, German-Pakistani artist Jasmin Siddiqui, aka Hera, nods to her background in street art with sweeping, spray-painted marks, chaotic drips and splatters, and snippets of text. The gestural pieces are rooted in narrative and feature wide-eyed characters who wear headdresses of long-nosed rats, wolves, and strange, hairless creatures. In each imaginative rendering, Hera positions the possibility and wonder of adolescence alongside wild animals often deemed nuisances to human society, with “I’m fine really” displayed next to a child whose finger is snapped in a mousetrap and the title of another work, “Love Her But Leave Her Wild,” accompanying a contorted figure.

“My affiliation is always with those who create beauty in the darkest of places. Because the gutter feels closer to my creative home than the artist studio. I come from graffiti culture,” says Hera, who’s also one-half of the street art duo Herakut (previously).  “I used to be the vulture, the raccoon, the street rat, that rummaged through leftover paint buckets left on the curbs of home renovations, treasuring other people’s trash.”

The mixed-media pieces shown here are part of Hera’s solo show Here We Go Again, which runs November 6 through December 11 at Corey Helford Gallery. She currently has a limited-edition print of a fox-clad figure available through myFINBEC, and you can find more of her small- and large-scale works on Instagram.

 

“You Live and Learn,” acrylic paint, spray paint, charcoal on canvas, 35.4 x 23.6 inches

“Smart Rats Have a Thousand Lives,” acrylic paint, spray paint, charcoal on canvas, 39.4 x 19.7 inches

Left: “Seen It All and Still Have Hope,” acrylic paint, spray paint, charcoal on canvas, 39.4 x 19.7 inches. Right: “An Ode to You,” acrylic paint, spray paint, charcoal on canvas, 47.2 x 15.75 inches

“I Had This Guy,’ acrylic paint, spray paint, charcoal on canvas, 27.6 x 27.6 inches

“Love Her but Leave Her Wild,” acrylic paint, spray paint, charcoal on canvas, 35.4 x 23.6 inches

“Poetry Written in Fairy Language,” acrylic paint, spray paint, charcoal on canvas, 27.6 x 19.7 inches

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