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Daniel Douke:

Contemporary Gallery

This exhibition presents eleven extraordinary paintings by Southern California artist Daniel Douke dating from 2007-15. Although his work presents compelling illusions, everything that meets the eye in Douke’s work is paint. A glance at the reverse side of his iMac, which appears to be a manufactured box containing an Apple iMac, reveals the back of a painting—canvas stretched taut over wooden stretcher bars. Yet his works do not aspire to visual perfection. Rather, Douke meticulously records every speck of dirt, every ding in the iMac box, creating a reproduction of the real object with all inherent imperfections. Skill and craftsmanship are key to his practice, and Douke is a purist: he makes everything himself, and never employs studio assistants nor uses factory-made items. His sculptural paintings do not seek to fool the eye, as in trompe-l’oeil (French for ‘deceive the eye’) paintings which endeavor to look like real objects. Rather, Douke installs his works to present a stunning ‘reveal,’ encountered when viewers examine the reverse side of his sculptural paintings.