In-person art exhibitions will return to Ripon College Friday, Sept. 3, contingent on recommended guidelines about the COVID-19 pandemic.

Artist Michael Davidson

Works such as this by Milwaukee-based artist Michael Davidson will be on display at Ripon College.

“More Scenes from Our Addiction to Fictions,” a show of new and recent paintings by Milwaukee-based artist Michael Davidson, will run through Oct. 14 in the Caestecker Gallery of the C.J. Rodman Center for the Arts.

An opening reception will be held Sept. 3 with refreshments at 6:30 p.m. near the gallery and an artist’s talk at 7 in Demmer Recital Hall. The exhibition opening will follow.

In this series of work, Davidson uses the notion of an ongoing and unfinished conceptual opera as a framework to question and consider the need and desire to make paint make sense.

According to an artist’s statement, “Stacking influences and ideas from incredibly diverse sources, Davidson interrogates his watercolors. This excavation is done through techniques of addition and subtraction, through a variety of means of imparting colored viscous fluids to a flat surface, both direct and indirect. This process often involves forays from analog to digital and back to explore possibilities and assist a given work’s often circuitous investigation.

“Imagined as scenes, transitions, sets and singular moments in an epic and ongoing fictional theatrical production, Davidson’s paintings operate between the specific and the obscure. The veils of paint form a scaffolding of convincingness and a sensual believable landscape. Yet, simultaneously, these are paintings whose symphonic curiosity constantly flirts with incessantly questioning doubt. These paintings amplify the role of the artist as conjurer of both the real and the elusive. Art is a critically important refuge for mystery, art gives mystery a place to live.”

Davidson received his master of fine arts degree from S.U.N.Y.-Purchase. He has taught at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design, where he also served as chair of fine arts. Additionally, he has acted as a mentor for the Milwaukee Artist Resource Network. His work has been exhibited in New York City and throughout Wisconsin, including the Frank Juarez Gallery in Milwaukee.

Caestecker Gallery is open Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 2 to 5 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays from 2 to 6 p.m.

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