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Our critics review local visual arts exhibitions.

The World Domination of Painting (and Drawing) — Ego Park has mounted a group show, with mixed results. Mia Liu's "The Bloom Family Tree," a series of origami boxes laid out as a genealogy, and Robin Ward's watercolors of swimming horses and lounging walruses against textured white grounds are visually stunning, particularly in what they don't show. Ashlee Ferlito's "Mr. Grumps," a sparse pencil sketch of a sad, shy ape and a cartoon heart, is utterly evocative, despite — or because of — its simplicity. Catherine Saiki's careful, nearly photorealist renderings of Christmas bells piercing anonymous skin and a young man in a goatee wearing antlers surprise the viewer, and Laura Ball's watercolors of adults riding merry-go-rounds have a 1970s feel and an edge of violence. Both bring something startling and unnerving to the seemingly banal. Yet John Herschend's works seem little more than a messy accident of color, and Yvette Molina's "Bellwether" is just another cryptic piece featuring stags and their ominous antlers. (At 492 23rd St., Oakland; or 510-839-4667.)


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