I Thought You Separated and We’re Going Home took shape simultaneously within Jay Davis’ studio. The two works share the same lush, romantic finish attained through the exacting application of more than 50 coats of acrylic paint. As companion paintings, they also share a near-identical subject matter, laid down in opposing directions on each canvas with the use of a delicate hand-drawn stencil. Such is the subtlety, mystery even, of its layered surface that a complete grasp of the works’ visual content initially eludes the viewer; only in time, and in a variety of different lights, does it teasingly reveal itself.

A large, rounded form, set behind some young bamboo saplings in the darker of the two works, dominates the painting’s lower section. It seems to be some sort of root or flowerpot, the source of life from which a mass of gorgeous black and blueish leaves lick upwards like flames. Above them, barely discernible, sits an ethereal crown of foliage. In the sister image, the lighter of the two, the same bulbous form looks like a face; lower down, the clusters of black leaves left and right resemble hands, while the inverted crown beneath becomes an image of the plant-creature reflected in a glass table.

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