The Frankfurt based gallery owner studied art history, history and business law at the Friedrich Wilhelm University in Bonn before she began working as a freelance curator in 1997. In 1999, she realised the exhibition “Natural Reality” for the Ludwig Forum in Aachen, one of the first group exhibitions to deal with the topic of art and ecology in a broader sense. In addition to works by Joseph Beuys, Robert Smithson and Ana Medieta, she also showed works by Mel Chin, Mark Dion, Herman de Vries, Henrik Hakansson, Helen Mayer Harrison & Newton Harrison and Lois Weinberger.
From 1999 to 2006, Heike Strelow worked mainly in the field of art and sustainability, and together with Hildegard Kurt founded the und.institut, which sees its task as mediating and networking between cultural practitioners and the diverse actors in the discourse field of future viability (sustainability) and testing models of fruitful exchange. In 2004, she published a standard work on “Ecological Aesthetics” with Birkhäuser Verlag.
In 2007, she opened her gallery in Frankfurt am Main. Over the past 14 years, she has developed a programme that moves between socio-political discourse and central art-immanent questions. Even though she has long since expanded her curatorial focus, she continues to pursue themes from the field of nature and culture in her gallery with artists such as Irene Grau, Mathias Kessler and George Steinmann.
Born in Kempten, Germany in 1968, the New York based artist Mathias Kessler engages our collective idea of nature by staging natural processes that are then scrutinized under the lens of art history, philosophy, and eco-political debate. His work acts as a catalyst, revealing the tension between human interventions and our desire for authentic natural experiences. Kessler exposes the impacts that capitalism, memory, fantasy, and mortality have on our intrinsic desire to reshape the natural world thus birthing the Anthropocene.
Mathias Kessler received his MFA in Art Practice from the School of Visual Arts in 2013. He has exhibited internationally, including solo exhibitions at the, Kunsthaus Bregenz, Kirchner Museum, Davos, Kunsthal Rotterdam, Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, Boulder, Colorado, Palmengarten Frankfurt, Site:Lab, Grand Rapids, Michigan; Rosphot National Museum for Photography, St. Petersburg, GL Holtegaard Museum, Copenhagen, and Kunstraum Dornbirn and Paradise Now at MARCO | Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Monterrey.
He also has experience in the conception and realisation of group exhibitions. Together with Dr. Dr. Dieter Buchhart, he curated two exhibitions for the Austrian Cultural Forum New York entitled Constructing Paradise (2012) and (UN)NATURAL LIMITS (2008). Most recently, he curated the participatory exhibition project Unterbrechung for the Künstlerhaus Palais Thurn und Taxis in 2019. He has been working with Galerie Heike Strelow since 2010.