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A longtime fixture on Royal Street, the old Hanson Gallery was known for its light and bright menu of international maestros ranging from landscapist Thomas McKnight to pop icon Peter Max, who often presided over show openings that were as colorful has his paintings. The gallery was in the process of undergoing a move and a name modification even before the recent upheavals, and recently emerged from its storm-extended chrysalis as the Hanson-King Gallery at 523 Royal St. Beyond the name and location, much else remains the same including the artist roster and the long-scheduled exhibition of recent paintings by the enigmatic Frenchman, Raymond Douillet. An impresario of aesthetic mysteries who surveys the far regions of surrealism, kitsch and fantasy in his darkly detailed canvases, Douillet returns novelty and surprise to a street that has seemed uncharacteristically sedate in recent weeks. To mark his four decades on the far side of the psyche, a five-piece limited edition set of prints based on "the senses" is also being premiered in a suite of images that, gallery director Angela King says, are rendered with extra-sensory intellect, imagination and wit -- as are all of his works.
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