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TO SEPT. 14
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Remember that guy in your high school art class who kinda kept to himself and drew weirdbut extraordinarily skillfulfantasy scenes that seemed to be inspired by Dungeons & Dragons and the animation scenes in the movie Pink Floyd: The Wall? Well, that guy grew up to be Jeff Kromer. Ozone Studioa cozy gallery that opened at 14th and P Streets this summerhas mounted a one-man exhibition of more than a dozen of Kromer’s charcoals and pastels on paper. Kromer, in his artist’s statement, calls his work “a cross between surrealism and expressionism,” and that’s as good a description as any. Though he tends to specialize in heads and bodies rather than mechanical forms or landscapes, Kromer’s visual vocabulary is deeply personal: Scary clowns, Medusas, cubist bodies, and screaming heads predominate. Jack of Heartsnicely mounted in the gallery’s shop-front windowmay refer to Kromer’s childhood passion of performing magic tricks. His skull-like Head features the exposed, gritted teeth and expressionist color strokes of a Willem de Kooning Woman. Other works exude the alienated rage of characters in a Francis Bacon painting, and Mother and Child (pictured) features a suckling infant that looks suspiciously like a grown man. Kromer’s cobalt blues and electric greens are so carefully crafted that they look almost airbrusheda style as distinctive as his subject matter. “Jeff Kromer: Drawings and Pastels” is on view from 4 to 8 p.m. Wednesday to Saturday, to Friday, Sept. 14, at Ozone Studio Gallery, 1404 P St. NW. Free. (202) 986-5749. (Louis Jacobson)