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Stayin' Alive 

Wednesday, Aug 1 2007
Screaming faces of non-humans and unexpected puffy linings show up a lot in John Dwyer's paintings and drawings. Amorphously Bigfoot-like figures are another Dwyer motif. The local musician has been in several popular experimento/indie/garage-type bands, including the Coachwhips and Pink and Brown. This is only his second solo show, but "Super Poor Friends" looks great. The other half of the double-solo exhibit is "Estamos Vivos!" by Juan Luna-Avin, whose obsession with Mexican metal weirdo Paco Gruexxo results in some neon colors and faux-naïve drawings that look like something inked on a seventh-grade notebook. The title translates to "We Are Alive!"

Both artists take inspiration and imagery from pop culture, and both have an adolescent, sneering-yet-vulnerable quality to their work that's entirely in sync with their subjects: It makes us think of the way we felt the first time we ever heard Def Leppard.
Aug. 3-Sept. 1

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