Considered one of his best paintings from the early 1970s by David Shapiro, Putney Winter Heart #8 (Skier) is a monumental yet playful example of the heart motif in Dine's art. The heart first appeared as a stage prop in his production design of A Midsummer's Night Dream in 1966, a cushion-like object embraced by Puck as he exclaims "Lord, what fools these mortals be!". For the artist, this motif is more than simply an association of romantic love. In the present painting, Dine incorporates Dada tactics of elevating the almost banal image of the heart and using readymades that are literally attached to the paint surface. At the same time, he critiques the subjective gestural brushwork of the Abstract Expressionists by using it as a backdrop for objects of the real world such as a mitten or a pair of boots, therefore, denying the sublime factor in Abstract Expressionist painting.
David Shapiro writes about the present work, "Here the 'prime object' of the heart has been attacked or festooned as if it were a Christmas tree. It has become the secular centering device, as Johns used targets, flags, or numerals. The heart could be as flat as any numeral, but is here brought forward, mottled and modeled along its edges by almost neon greens and blues. Upon it we find a child's bright red glove, and, looking closer upon it, the commercial image of a skier in woven white. Very careful rectangles of red and green remind one of Hans Hofmann's push-and-pull abstractions, and they are certainly a burlesque of such scholastic Expressionism" (Shapiro, op. cit., pp. 40-42).