As an artist with a background in neuropsychology, Abbey Hepner is fascinated with health and human behavior and frequently works at the intersection of art and science, navigating through collaborative and research-oriented practices. Her work investigates systems of power and the use of health as a currency. With a contemplative eye towards history and sociology, she mines the ethical grey area where science, technology, and humanity collide. Frequently engaging with and questioning the taboo, she offers entry through the absurd and often humorous aspects of these loaded topics, in an attempt to remove their pathology. Her practice ranges in execution from art intervention to performance, from costuming to biological experimentation, but the artwork almost always lives in and through the photographic medium.
Hepner received degrees in Studio Art and Psychology from the University of Utah and her MFA in Photography from the University of New Mexico. Her work has been exhibited widely in such venues as the Mt. Rokko International Photography Festival (Kobe, Japan), SITE Santa Fe, the San Diego Art Institute, Noorderlicht Photofestival (Groningen, Netherlands), and the Newspace Center For Photography (Portland, OR). Her work has been recently highlighted in Lenscratch, Ars Technica, Artillery Magazine, Aint-Bad Magazine, Strange Fire Collective, and Fraction Magazine. She has presented at numerous conferences including the 2015 International Symposium on Electronic Art (ISEA) in Vancouver, Canada, and the 2016 and 2017 Society for Photographic Education (SPE) conferences. In the summer of 2018, she was an artist in residence at the Banff Center for the Arts in Banff, Alberta, Canada.
Hepner is involved in community education and serves on a committee for the College Art Association and as the Chair of the Society for Photographic Education Southwest Chapter. She also writes for a number of arts publications including Strange Fire Collective. She teaches at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs and is the co-founder of Creative Advocacy. (x)
Questions about the human relationship with landscape and technology are at the core of my work. I investigate the demands we place on technology and what happens when it fails us. I am interested in systems of power and hyperobjects. My practice ranges in execution from art intervention to performance, from costuming to biological experimentation, but the artwork almost always lives in and through the photographic medium. I aim to provoke the viewer to engage with and question the taboo, offering entry through the absurd and humorous aspects of these loaded topics. Examining news, advertising, and the medical and energy industries, I push against cognitive dissonance in an age of technological advancement where health is a currency and ethics are constantly being redefined.
See the work of Abbey Hepner and her fellow UCCS VAPA Faculty at TIME at GOCA Ent Center for the Arts (5225 N Nevada Ave) starting January 31st and running through May 12th.
Abbey Hepner will give a free artist talk on March 14th along with exhibition artists Pauline Foss, Marina Eckler, and Nikki Pike. Register HERE.