Advance word from the folks at Art Forms Gallery is that artist Stephen Hall creates personal canvases that engage the viewer through tension, mystery, and glimpses of personal demons.

“Images of abstracted shapes, still-life forms, or surreal figurative motifs are rendered as symbolic colors, ambiguous light sources, and spatial dynamics,” the gallery says in a press release.

Yeah, and the “Shark ‘n Shrimp” picture, excerpted at left, is kind of funny, too.

A native of Scotland, Hall left home at age 17 to see the world and later settled in New York. Self-taught as a painter, he began exhibiting during the explosion of galleries in the East Village in the early 1980’s.

Hall’s work on paper and canvas will be featured in a one-man show, titled “Patterns,” at Art Forms. The display opens with a reception Saturday, Sept. 16, from 6 to 8p, and runs through Oct. 7.

Art Forms is at 16 Monmouth Street. Hours are Tuesday through Thursday 10-6, and Friday and Saturday 11-7. Sunday and Monday viewings are by appointment only.