By Jerry Cullum
FOR THE JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION
Though the title of this exhibition suggests a seasonal nod to Halloween, Dan Addington and C. Dawn Davis explore their rather dark psychological territory on a far more serious level than that.
Addington's oil, wax and tar on wood pieces are uniformily elegiac. In fact, they seem to use almost every symbol of death and resurrection that our culture has to offer, from wreaths and falling rose petals to angels, Irish crosses and the black, equal-armed cross of German artist Joseph Beuys. The titles suggest a meditative metaphysics of twilight mingled with something else:"Marriage of Damage and Loss", but also "Marriage of Damage and Hope".
The atmospheric effects of these paintings are astonishing, within a narrow emotional range. Addington makes loss look downright seductive - and this is a popular sensibility today, for many reasons.
C. Dawn Davis, on the other hand, is a complex allegorist of loss and self-delusion. Her elaborately costumed women usually wear masks and are often accompanied by birds or monkeys. In "The Element of Illusion, "the women usually wear masks and are often accompanied by birds or monkeys. In "The Element of Illusion," the woman appears in control of her magic tricks; in "The Fashion Critic", she seems to be mocked by the costumed monkey beside her. The naked figure in "Waiting for Perseus" is languidly awaiting a hero to rescue her from bonds she could easily slip out of by herself .Again, the gorgeous sensory detail makes these paintings compelling, even as their wry psychological perspective makes them a little scary.
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