Davidson Galleries Pioneer Square
Tuesdays-Saturdays. Continues through Dec. 2 2017
A fish-belly-white face with craters for eyes stares out over a chain-mail-like dress that barely hints at the presence of a body beneath. The figure's white-gray hair starts as a thin wave and dissipates into dim black squiggles in the flat dun background. The title of the painting is We Have Become Mean, and it's one of the 11 new paintings in Robert E. Marx's final show at the Davidson Galleries, a space that has hung his work since 1973. The other 10 portraits also seem to coalesce out of the abstract color-washed backgrounds, but some of the blurred eyes seem warmer and the faces more sympathetic, as in The Pretender, which depicts a white-haired person on a rust-colored background and something on her head that resembles a bow or some sort of sea creature. All of the portraits hold your gaze, engaging your humanity even as you search for theirs.