Paul Heyer employs a lexicon of skeletons, blue apples and other natural elements to explore how imagination shapes our lived experience. He shows viewers new ways of seeing our world, while asking what kind of future we want to craft. Heyer’s hyper-saturated paintings recall symbolist and surrealist traditions, while embracing a queer perspective that challenges conventional boundaries.



Paul Heyer was born in 1982 in Olympia Fields, Illinois. He studied at Columbia University, earning his BA in 2004, followed by his MFA in 2009. 

Solo exhibitions of his work have taken place at: Chapter NY in New York (2020); Mickey in Chicago (2019); Night Gallery in Los Angeles (2019); and at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago (2018); among others. Group exhibitions showing his work have taken place at: Perrotin Gallery in New York (2019); MX Gallery in New York  (2018); Agustina Ferryra in Mexico City (2018); and HOME in Manchester, UK (2018); among others. 

His work has been collected by the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago and the Brauer Museum of Art at Valparaiso University in Valparaiso, Indiana. 

His work has been written about in Artforum, The New York Times and FlashArt

Heyer lives and works in Chicago, IL.

"I wanted to make paintings that free the viewer from self-consciousness, one of the plagues of our time. So I dreamt up skeletons who are too in awe of the world to question themselves and blue apples so beautiful and strange that it’s like you’re seeing an apple for the first time.” — Paul Heyer
"Neo-Symbolist Disney after the rave." — Paul Heyer