News Archive

06.08.- 26.08.2020 ANNA HEINRIHSONE "Behind the Frames""

06.08. - 26.08.2020

Galerija "Māksla XO"

Elizabetes iela 14, Rīga, LV 1010


Behind the Frames

For the last couple of years Anna Heinrihsone has used photographs from the family archive (from 1930s till 1950s) as a motif for her paintings. Focusing on the moments where the protagonists are liberated and emotionally close to one another – first bike ride as a couple, skier who isn’t confident about her skills, mother kicking a soccer ball – within the paintings it all is turned into a long, visual line. What happens behind the scenes  of the photograph is the continuation in the painting. The black-and-white picture of the past turns into an imaginary act. In miniature painting format, the motif of a photo comes to life from black and white to colour, expanding and showing what is not seen in the small, antique-framed, old-fashioned photograph.
The inspiration for the latest exhibition came to Anna Heinrihsone after her encounter with the German photography collector Jochen Raiß's book ‘Frauen auf Bäumen’ (Women in the Trees). Within it, as the title implies, Jochen Raiß has compiled black and white photographs, acquired over a long period of time, of women climbing branches of a wide variety of trees.

The mystery behind the people in photos is fascinating. We can only guess, whether there was a kid’s party happening in the background, perhaps it was a moment of shared solitude, or an escape from a noisy picnic.
Among other subtle forms of relationship, there is only one that can be captured visibly - the fragile link between the photographer and his model. Confidence, gaze, posture (most often tucked away in a beautiful angle), but above all, an almost intimate, naked gaze”- Anna Heinrihsone, 2020.

„Am I beautiful? Am I beautiful from head to toe? Are my fingers beautiful too?

The photographer gives a momentary confirmation, without any responsibility for the future, without any promise to execute it. This line, this gentle, faithful, ephemeral connection is more sensuous than a kiss.

Is this alright? Perhaps a little bit to the left? Should I open my lips?

The horizon widens until its ends meet at one point, the circle closes in a sphere. With an inhale the lens aperture closes.

It’s going to be a good picture,’ the photographer says.

The surroundings come to life, sounds return and the model remembers about the loosened shoestrap”- Anna Heinrihsone.


Anna Heinrihsone is one of the most renowned contemporary costume and stage designers in Latvia with international experience.
In parallel to stage, costume design and exhibition design, Anna Heinrihsone also works in visual art – painting and drawing, regularly organizing solo shows and participating in group exhibitions. Similarly to her stage designs, bright and original characters are also distinctive in her paintings. Anna Heinrihsone’s works create an absolutely solitary world of images, in which every new work can be perceptible as a sequel of the last. In her paintings, the artist has directness typical to the drawing of children, and it leads us into ironical, stinging and tragicomic world of images.
Anna Heinrihsone (1970) has graduated from the Department of Stage Design of the Art Academy of Latvia (1996). Since 1995, she has created stage designs and costumes for more than 80 theatre plays in Latvia, Estonia and Russia. Since 1992, Anna Heinrihsone has been participating at the Prague Quadrennial of Performance Design and Space,as well as organized 14 solo shows and participated in more than 20 painting and stage design group exhibitions in Latvia and abroad. Her works are in public collections – Latvian National Museum of Art (Riga, Latvia), Swedbank Contemporary Art Collection (Riga, Latvia), KUMU (Tallinn, Estonia).
The artist lives and works in Riga, Latvia.