Last weekend, Corey Helford Gallery’s Circa opened Ray Caesar and Beau Stanton’s side by side solo shows. Despite this abstract pairing, together their latest works reveal something personal about each artist. For his previous showing at Circa, “New and Rare Works” (reviewed here), Caesar’s digital paintings reflected memories of his experiences at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto. Now with “A Tainted Virtue”, he’s diving even deeper into emotional themes that only his surreal fantasy heroines can express. Caesar, who openly battles with dissociative identity disorder, has turned his ability to detach from reality into visions of wonder. Every scene has his signature touch of eeriness, juxtaposed by his costumed sirens in far off, romantic settings. Elements of fairytales are also clearly visible, as in “Tea with He and Me,” where an innocent beauty drinks tea with the big bad wolf.
Beau Stanton with his work.
Beau Stanton, known for his steampunk-esque murals, shocks the room with his diagram paintings on the opposite wall. For his debut “Cartography of the Machine,” he found inspiration in 19th century art and medical drawings, mixed with his own creative twist. Layers of motifs such as florals and letterpress graphics radiate from his subjects, almost to the effect of stained glass. He calls this style “Ornamental Realism”, a product of his obsession with patterns. Even his shoes at opening night were hand-painted with the same delicate designs. Similar to Caesar, Stanton is carefully experimenting with the principles of old and new.
Beau Stanton and Ray Caesar are on view at CHG Circa gallery through May 10, 2014.
Shoes by Beau Stanton.