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The paintings in “Better Days Ahead” reflect uncertain times. They depict landscapes in transition, environments being shaped by forces outside the frame of each painting. Infrastructure, built to accommodate a growing population, crumbles. This moment, frozen in time, poses a question: what has happened here?

New infrastructure, desperately hopeful, is built. What will happen next? As the last rays of afternoon light glimmer across the shapes of this partially constructed plain, the land echoes our anxious hope for better days ahead.

Michael Shankman lives and works in Brooklyn. “Better Days Ahead” is on view at Hang Art Gallery in San Francisco for the month of August, 2008.

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