Chicago

Dan Devening

CCA Gallery

In Dan Devening’s paintings, he summons forth bits and pieces of thespian flotsam—yards of drapery never to be drawn back, ornate chandeliers forever darkened, segments of backdrops randomly leaning against one another—and juxtaposes them with images of actors (sometimes drawn from the commedia dell’arte), creating melancholy evocations animated by a palpable sense of loss. Presented on multiple panels frequently stacked atop one another and presented on shelves in seemingly random arrangements, Devening’s images have an eerie and ghostlike quality, a Felliniesque air that undercuts the initial sense of nostalgia or romanticism.

Motley’s the attire worn by Devening’s tragicomic actors; in his presentations, the costumes of Zanni, Pedrolino, and Punch sport the repetitive diamond-shaped design of the fool’s garb. Actually, it is the absence of these characters, their ghosts, that Devening

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