Visual Arts Picks

FROZEN MOMENTS

This group show, part of the Hindsight Series currently on view at Consolidated Works, tackles issues of revisiting time and memory with work by seven artists: Charm Bracelet, Lance Wakeling, Dan DeZarn, Buddy Bunting, Rob Zverina, and Cathy McClure and Seth Sexton. Dan DeZarn's work (above) gamely grabs at a specific moment in time by capturing firecrackers at the instant of explosion. Using trial and error, he inserts moisture-proof firecrackers into cast-resin molds right before they go off. The result is an altarlike structure which, lit from below, seems an homage to the gods of sweet adolescence (and perhaps to missing fingers). Rob Zverina attempts to harness both past and present, as well as East and West: having garnered masses of personal, superfluous photographs, he has used them to wallpaper the interior of a shipping container ultimately destined to travel to the artist's genealogical homeland in Prague. Cathy McClure and Seth Sexton deconstruct an icon of childhood—and with it the Disneyesque fantasy of remembered innocence—by assembling a mammoth stage of furry dismembered stuffed animals whose mechanized voices squeal as you traipse through them. Consolidated Works, 500 Boren Ave. N., 206-381-3218. 4 p.m.-8 p.m. Thu.-Fri.; 1 p.m.-8 p.m. Sat.-Sun. Exhibit runs through June 27. SUZANNE BEAL

ELLEN WIXTED

Mike Daisey, in his memoir of life at Amazon.com, called them Dockers Cocks, those cheesy, schmoozy cell-phone guys like you see in Interrupted Meeting (above) by Ellen Wixted, who is currently showing a stunning series of oils of corporate conference rooms and offices. But Wixted, drawing from the clear-eyed dispassion of Edward Hopper (whose brushy style her work superficially resembles), steers clear of such outright satire. "There has to be some ambiguity," she says, "to allow for a real human presence." The paintings zero in on the dispiriting little details of corporate life: the overlapping shadows cast by a potted plant lit from above by those awful, inevitable fluorescent lights; the narrow shelf for the dry-erase markers; the toxic sexual politics encoded in workplace body language. The personal objects cube dwellers surround themselves with also come under Wixted's long, cool gaze, like one worker's collection of teddy bears solemnly lined up in the afternoon light. One of my favorite of these canvases, which arose from Wixted's own experience as a contract worker for a software company, shows a man standing in front of a diagram scrawled on a white board, as if vainly seeking an exit strategy in its arrows and circles. Gallery 110, 110 S. Washington St., 206-624-9336. Noon-5 p.m. Wed.-Sat. Exhibit runs through June 26. DAVID STOESZ

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