Wooziness is a flirt. She’s in cahoots with the heart and the head, with flesh, gravity, science and the senses. She’s easily sought too – a spin of the body, a playground swing, a chemical cleaner found under the sink, a poisonous wound from the tip of Eros’s arrow. She is as carnal as she is chemical.
I’ve always wanted to ask conceptual artist Dale Frank if he is a natural-born wooze-addict. Because Frank deals in dizziness, it’s his currency, his language, and probably, considering he works with paint stripper acid, varnish, automotive harlequin paint and anodised Perspex, his natural state.
For decades his large-scale paintings, in all their oozing sensuality, have mirrored that syrupy rush of blood to the head, from frame to ocular nerve. Drip.Drip.Drip.
Evolving from drizzled paint and swirling varnishes, crafted by his signature sticky pour, Frank’s newer works have taken him to a chromatic, reflective place, his magpie eye for colour subtly and alchemic tendencies on show via warped plexiglass surfaces and the deployment of turpentine, lighter fluid and acid.
In Sabco Peroxide, Frank pulsates into 3D. Snakes of oil-slick-coloured foam bulge out of canvases; a shattered BMW windscreen violently frosts a scarlet perpsex base; a shimmering Tokyo Drift-green Marc Newson Orgone chair erupts with mucilaginous foam, rotates in the centre of the room as if aborted from the deep. *heavy breathing*
There’s a work that drips onto the wooden floor like treacle; several that bend with movement, bubbling bulbous hangs and an overall potency to the show that hits you like sniffing a Sharpie at 3pm on a workday after too much caffeine. OOF. A woozy ride you have no choice but to embrace until Frank releases you and your head clears.
Dale Frank: Sabco Peroxide is showing at Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery until February 13, roslynoxley9.com.au