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Stray Light Shadow Between, a solo exhibition of new work at Devening Projects January 13 - February 16, 2019

Stray Light Shadow Between is a sum of many moving parts. The paintings have a kind of restlessness on their surfaces; they don’t seek a specific end or conclusion. Many movements and gestures come together in irregular rhythms, often interrupted by sprawling seams and stray threads that stand as a testament to their making. Their faces show evidence of time and friction, odds and ends rubbing up against one another, creating sparks of light and swirls of murky indecision.

Some paintings start with light: an image of the Moon or Sun, or the Sky on a particular time of day–a distant memory sewn into the heart of the painting. But when light encounters resistance, it casts a shadow. This shadow stretches the light until it extinguishes, just as the evening sky smolders in its final moments. Bands of light eat one another until the stars show their faces. It is in these dark, infinite facets that we find countless moments of uncertainty, longing, and anxiety; a miraculous spectrum containing glistening bits of this and that.

That brings us back to the assembly of many parts; making a painting that starts off in a familiar place of memory and letting it slowly spin out of control and orchestrate its own character. Making a painting in this way is similar to making a soup – the kind of soup that uses the odds and ends of your pantry to arrive at a place that is both spectacular, strange, and hopefully edible. You start off with what you know, the foundations of your broth, and as you begin to gain confidence, the moves become riskier and you find yourself adding an unnecessary amount of fish sauce or unexplainable dashes of nutmeg. As the soup nears its completion, the flame turned down to a low simmer, you look down into the pot and witness a miraculous assembly of oil and fat– incandescent blips of light dancing on an amber surface.

-Cody Tumblin, 2019