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Eric Heckert: The Surreal Deal



 When We Met Up With Local Artist And Founder Of Pop Alchemy Eric Heckert, he was driving back to Oklahoma from Baton Rouge, where his piece, “DA’AT,” was selected from more than a thousand national entries as one of 80 works
to be featured at the Baton Rouge Gallery Center for Contemporary Art’s Surreal Salon Six exhibition.

The trip from Baton Rouge, we learned in our conversation,
is just one scenic lookout along Heckert’s extremely visual, esoteric and artistic journey through pop surrealism.

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Are you a native Oklahoman? My dad worked for the FAA, so we lived all around the country. I’ve lived in Oklahoma since 1985.

How did you come to be a professional artist? I’ve been an artist all my life. For many years, I worked in air traffic control as a ghost pilot, but I really wanted to give art my full attention, so a few years ago, I quit my job and took the plunge.

And the planes didn’t fall from the sky? No. They did fine without me.

Would you describe that leap of faith as the best decision you ever made? Absolutely. I was terrified at first, but I’d definitely do it again. That decision allowed me to put out my best work.

What’s the best part of your job? Freedom. Being able to express what makes me, me.

What’s the B-side of the job? Downtime. That’s when doubt can creep in and you wonder if you’ve made the right decision. It’s one thing to know in your heart that this is what you’re meant to do. It’s another for the world to catch up with it.

What inspires you for this work? The constant surprise at what comes out of it. It’s like problem solving to me – I start with a concept in its basic form and rebuild it.

What other skills do you have? Does karaoke count? I can also do a mean robot.

You must be great at parties. Do you stockpile worthless trivia, too? Tons! I’m awesome at Trivial Pursuit. I’m a pop culture enthusiast and I feel lucky to have been born at the apex of pop culture and the dawn of mass communications, although I’m crap at social media.

Your website, popalchemy.com, is a fascinating read. Do you keep a blog? Not really, but I’ve got about 400 followers on Twitter, so I guess you could say that’s my blog.

Who do you think you could be mistaken for? I get James Spader a lot. The older, on-“The-Blacklist” James Spader.

What can’t you help watching on TV? “Parks and Recreation.” I’m also renewing my HBO subscription just to watch “True Detective.”

What do you value most in your friends? Love. Loyalty. Great conversation.

What should people learn to do? Not to worry about what other people think. That’s what holds us back.

What was your favorite Saturday morning cartoon? I always got up early to watch “Super Friends,” but I loved “Scooby Doo” and all of them, really. I had my Saturday mornings planned all the way through “American Bandstand.”

How do you spend your Saturday mornings now? My wife Sandina and I have a Saturday ritual for dim sum at The Grand House (2701 N. Classen Blvd, Oklahoma City).

Do they have fortune cookies at The Grand House? Oh, yes.

If you could stash a little fortune inside one of those cookies for the next person to find, what would it say? Keep smiling.

What are you most grateful for? Life. Drinking it all in and swimming in it. For my wife, who inspires me every day. She’s the greatest person I know.

What character trait would you happily give up? Nothing. Part of our lesson is to take the good with the bad. We learn from both.

Which of those traits makes up part of the good? Sense of humor. I think it’s the most important thing.

What did you get in trouble for most often in school? Talking too much!

What do you hope people will never assume about you? That I take myself too seriously. That I have all the answers. That I’m unapproachable. I love talking to people (that’s why I got in trouble so much in class) and I hope that people always see me as a welcoming person.

Favorite quote? Know thyself.

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September 2018

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More than 20 speakers in a one-track session designed for the digital marketing professional, marketer, business owner or anyone interested in branding, PR, advertising, social media, SEO, search,...

Cost: $250

Where:
Tower Theatre
425 NW 23rd St
Oklahoma City, OK  73103
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Sponsor: BigWing
Telephone: 405.475.4185
Contact Name: Janelle Archer
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This year will mark the eighth time the John F. Kennedy Awards have been celebrated, honoring individuals making a significant contribution to Oklahoma, its communities and its people, while paying...

Cost: $300

Where:
Skirvin Hilton Hotel
1 Park Ave.
Oklahoma City, OK  73102
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Sponsor: Santa Fe Family Life Center
Telephone: 405-840-1817
Contact Name: James Timberlake
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More than 20 speakers in a one-track session designed for the digital marketing professional, marketer, business owner or anyone interested in branding, PR, advertising, social media, SEO, search,...

Cost: $250

Where:
Tower Theatre
425 NW 23rd St
Oklahoma City, OK  73103
View map »


Sponsor: BigWing
Telephone: 405.475.4185
Contact Name: Janelle Archer
Website »

More information

Price Tower Art Gallery in Bartlesville will host Women Artists of the West's 48th annual juried art exhibition, featuring over 200 original art works, created by women in all mediums, subjects...

Cost: Free 2018-09-21,22,23

Where:
Price Tower Art Gallery
510 S. Dewey Ave.
Bartlesville, OK  74003
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Sponsor: Price Tower Arts Center
Telephone: 918.336.4949
Contact Name: Angelina Bourgou
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Escape the ordinary, and learn about OKC from a different point of view. Relax in the climate controlled cabin on one of our 65’ cruisers, or enjoy the breeze on the viewing deck and listen...

Cost: $15 for Seniors and kids under 12, $20 Adults

Where:
Regatta Landing
701 S. Lincoln Blvd.
OKC, OK  73109
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Telephone: 405.702.7755
Contact Name: Business Office
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A fabulous art auction to raise money to help support Oklahoma A+ Schools at UCO.

Cost: $100

Where:
CHK|Central Boathouse
732 Riversport Dr.
Oklahoma City, OK  73129
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Sponsor: Oklahoma A+ Schools at UCO
Telephone: 405.974.3791
Contact Name: Heather Bryant
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The evening Cocktail Cruise offers stunning views of the downtown skyline, the Boathouse District and Finish Line Tower, the Wheeler Ferris wheel and quite possibly an amazing Oklahoma sunset. Come...

Cost: $15 for Seniors and kids under 12, $20 Adults

Where:
Regatta Landing
701 S. Lincoln Blvd.
OKC, OK  73109
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Telephone: 405.702.7755
Contact Name: Business Office
Website »

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Join supporters in communities across the nation for the St. Jude Walk/Run to End Childhood Cancer during Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. This family-friendly event raises funds to support the...

Cost: $10 for adults or children six and older

Where:
Stars and Stripes Park
3701 S. Lake Hefner Drive
Oklahoma City , OK  73116
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Telephone: 405.403.7762
Contact Name: Emily Drover
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Let’s end childhood cancer. Together! This September, supporters across the country will unite to participate in the St. Jude Walk/Run to End Childhood Cancer, an exciting, family-friendly...

Cost: $10 for Registration

Where:
Stars and Stripes Park
3701 S Lake Hefner Dr
Oklahoma City, OK  73116
View map »


Sponsor: ALSAC St. Jude Oklahoma City
Telephone: 405.403.7762
Contact Name: Emily Drover
Website »

More information

Price Tower Art Gallery in Bartlesville will host Women Artists of the West's 48th annual juried art exhibition, featuring over 200 original art works, created by women in all mediums, subjects...

Cost: Free 2018-09-21,22,23

Where:
Price Tower Art Gallery
510 S. Dewey Ave.
Bartlesville, OK  74003
View map »


Sponsor: Price Tower Arts Center
Telephone: 918.336.4949
Contact Name: Angelina Bourgou
Website »

More information

Escape the ordinary, and learn about OKC from a different point of view. Relax in the climate controlled cabin on one of our 65’ cruisers, or enjoy the breeze on the viewing deck and listen...

Cost: $15 for Seniors and kids under 12, $20 Adults

Where:
Regatta Landing
701 S. Lincoln Blvd.
OKC, OK  73109
View map »


Telephone: 405.702.7755
Contact Name: Business Office
Website »

More information

The evening Cocktail Cruise offers stunning views of the downtown skyline, the Boathouse District and Finish Line Tower, the Wheeler Ferris wheel and quite possibly an amazing Oklahoma sunset. Come...

Cost: $15 for Seniors and kids under 12, $20 Adults

Where:
Regatta Landing
701 S. Lincoln Blvd.
OKC, OK  73109
View map »


Telephone: 405.702.7755
Contact Name: Business Office
Website »

More information

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