Christopher Martin Hoff

Local painter Hoff empties the people out of his streetscape oils. We see the vacant alleys of Pioneer Square, parking lots filled only with graffiti, construction sites lying dormant beneath tarps and waiting for the recession to end. It’s like the city is holding it breath. Older canvases show Seattle during past periods of construction—there’s our downtown Rem Koolhaas library being erected, or the intricate blue lattice of rebar in a foundation being poured. One or two paintings might count as pastoral (an Elliott Bay scene, the reservoir in Volunteer Park), but Hoff is more the urbanist. He gives Dumpsters and even the Alaskan Way Viaduct a quiet, still kind of dignity. His show is called “Physical Graffiti,” though there’s nothing restive about it. Instead, our built environment is a place of static display. (Closed Sun. and Mon.) BRIAN MILER

April 2-May 2, 10:30 a.m., 2009

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