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Fred Stonehouse’s Surreal Paintings Explore Vulnerabilities

Fred Stonehouse's paintings look like they take place within the innermost crevices of a troubled mind rather than in any semblance of a real place. Unshaven, rugged, yet boyish, his characters seem to battle internal conflicts, feelings of guilt, and insecurities. Their inner demons come across as loaded visual symbols (and sometimes actual demons), which Stonehouse elucidates with text scrawled within each work.

Fred Stonehouse’s paintings look like they take place within the innermost crevices of a troubled mind rather than in any semblance of a real place. Unshaven, rugged, yet boyish, his characters seem to battle internal conflicts, feelings of guilt, and insecurities. Their inner demons come across as loaded visual symbols (and sometimes actual demons), which Stonehouse elucidates with text scrawled within each work.

“He Found Himself In a Situation Where He Was Constantly Being Asked to Do Things For Which He Was Not Qualified,” a painting is labeled. Below the text, a man with sweat beaded on his forehead wades into a swamp with the caption “Unknown.” Stonehouse makes his fears and vulnerabilities humorous and relatable, and it’s likely readers will see something of themselves in his works. He will debut a new series of paintings on February 5 at Antonio Colombo Arte Contemporanea in Milan for his two-person show with Esther Pearl Watson, “Family Lexicon.” Today we take a look at his new works as well as some pieces from the past year.

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