• Gerald Davis

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      The dotty surfaces of Gerald Davis‘ paintings seem to flicker like tangled strings of tiny lights, amplifying the visionary eeriness of his eccentric renditions of classical subjects such as bathers. The LA painter’s expressionistic pointillism recalls a wide range of references including mosaics, Aboriginal dot paintings, and Jean Metzinger’s Divisionism; yet his manner is unique. Many of the scenes in his current show were created via a monoprint-like technique of pressing wet paintings together, which results in unfussy smears and daubs with peaked textures. Grisly paintings on small sheets of vellum suggest faceless heads and skinned bodies. On larger canvases, intricate patterns of jewel-toned blotches coalesce into faces and figures that exude emotion yet remain vague like half-remembered hallucinations or dreams. Impastoed passages of periwinkle, goldenrod and turquoise in Ecstatic Figure (2019, pictured above) are supposed to represent a bather under a waterfall posed like Bernini’s “Ecstasy of St. Teresa”, but what of the curved red and salmon rays below the face? It’s impossible to tell, but one could imagine her neck spurting blood or becoming a tulip. In other large paintings, vases of flowers sprout heads, and faces sport multiple eyes and doubled lips. As you stare, the forms and figures seem to morph and move, cryptic like phantoms trying to communicate from another world.

       

      La Loma Projects
      1357 Brixton Rd.
      Pasadena, CA 91105
      Show runs through Dec. 8

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