American artist Robert Heindel has become synonymous with the world of the ballet, earning him widespread recognition and admiration in both the dance and art world.
Described as "the Degas of our time" through his studies of ballet dancers in rehearsal, he has received numerous personal invitations from many of the world''s most famous ballet companies with whom he has subsequently worked.
His paintings and sketches feature in private and public collections worldwide.
Heindel first came to prominence in the UK with his 1985/86 exhibition at the Royal Festival Hall, "The Obsession of Dance", which was opened by Princess Margaret and drew thousands of visitors.
This followed a period of two years working with The Royal Ballet and other leading British companies. It also led to an extension of his activities on dance into the field of the musical when Andrew Lloyd Webber invited him to paint "The Phantom of the Opera" in its pre-opening stages and his international success "Cats".
At the same time, Heindel was commuting to Monaco to work with the Monte Carlo Ballet prior to his exhibition in December 1987 at the Hotel de Paris, which was attended by Princess Caroline of Monaco.
In October 1988, he returned to the Royal Festival Hall with his second major UK exhibition. Once again the royal connections were strong - not only did Princess Diana attend the opening night, but the main focus of the latest work was a ballet titled "The Garden of Eros" commissioned especially for London City Ballet of which she was a Patron. Heindel''s distinguished guest commented, "Experts hold your work in he highest regard, I know, but for me it simply succeeds in capturing the spirit of dance as art".
Since then, Heindel has continued to work on high-profile projects and events across the UK and USA, with prestigious companies such as The Royal Opera House, The Scottish Ballet for the European City of Culture celebration, the Noh Theatre, Japan, and Birmingham Royal Ballet whose choreographer, David Bintley, also approached Heindel to design sets and costumes for the company.
Heindel''s artistic interest lies in the weeks before curtain-up, and in capturing the magic that goes hand in hand with the constant striving for perfection. After spending much time observing, sketching and taking thousands of colour slides during rehearsals, Heindel interprets his behind-the-scenes look at the world of the ballet and the stage in oils, pastels and drawings in his Connecticut studio. Above all, his style communicates the power, strength and breathless grace of his subjects.