There’s still time to nominate local icons for Best of D.C.
TO APRIL 30
Indonesian artist Heri Dono has a cruel way with names. Take, for instance, Flying Angels (pictured). It’s an installation of horned creatures: Their dangling penises and wings throw batlike shadows on the walls, threatening to swoop down onto gallery-goers like the bastard offspring of Oz’s winged monkeys. Then there are Dono’s superhero paintings: Badman wears a Jokeresque leer, spiked boots, and chariot wheels stuck to his torso. Spiderman has more legs than a normal human, and few people will remember Peter Parker sporting three eyes, an automatic rifle, and a little man in his mouth who’s holding a gun to his head. With his macabre twisting of titles, it’s easy to write Dono off as a malcontent who shakes the boat just to watch people puke. (And that seems to be the general effect his work had on the Indonesian government: In 1995, it asked Dono through its London embassy to cancel publication of an English catalog.) But Dono is no simple shock artist. His work seethes with the reform-minded concepts he believes Indonesians need to transform their “democracy” into a reality. His gruesome paintings criticize the notion of heroes with guns, while his “Angels,” buoyed with hover packs, hearken back to the age of benevolent technology, which Dono, appropriately enough, discovered by reading old Flash Gordon comics. His work is on view from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, and from 1 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, to Wednesday, April 30, at CP Artspace, 1350 I St. NW. Free. (202) 326-0447. (John Metcalfe)