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Eric Stotik, untitled, 2010, acrylic on wood panel, 13 1/2 x 10 1/2".

Eric Stotik

Laura Russo Gallery

Eric Stotik, untitled, 2010, acrylic on wood panel, 13 1/2 x 10 1/2".

Knowing that Portland, Oregon–based artist Eric Stotik grew up the son of Lutheran missionaries in Papua New Guinea, might go some way in explaining the painter’s recurring interest in images of human subjugation, imperialist torture, and exotic blood ritual. On the other hand, it explains not at all many other facets of the artist’s work, such as his bygone painting style, or his use of discarded paper and wood as material ground. While Stotik’s images are clearly objects of great personal obsession—maybe even born of his colonial youth in the land of headhunters—they also stubbornly defy biographical, or any, categorization.

For more than twenty years now Stotik has been describing his dark vision shard by shard, fleshing out a world in which horse-headed demons, tribalistic babies, inscrutable machines, ominous storm clouds, and charred architecture (to inventory but

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