Susan Bennerstrom

A study of empty rooms, Susan Bennerstrom's "Within" captures the interplay of light and shadow, where light is the lead actor and shadow provides decisive lines for a supporting role. The empty rooms, overall, seem vaguely familiar; they have an "any city" anonymity that lends an air of mystery. And mystery is the natural precursor to all sorts of imaginative musings. Wrinkled pillowcases and unmade beds might suggest a rush to work, or a romantically lazy "morning after" scene. A slightly open door with a beam of light peeking through and a hesitant pause before the staircase evoke a tense balance between fear and hope. The inherent drama in the images is nuanced, but powerful. This is the last week "Within" will be on display at Davidson Contemporary, the new contemporary arm of Pioneer Square's Davidson Galleries. Its next exhibition features new paintings by New York artist Brian Novatny. Davidson Contemporary, Tashiro-Kaplan Building, 310 S. Washington St., 206-624-4588, 11 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Tues.-Sat. Ends Oct. 29.

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