From Stella Rosa McDonald…
With flat high-tone colours and a refined use of negative space, the works on paper and ceramics that make up Chris Dolman’s Death Wobbles draw upon pop culture, cartoons and geometric abstraction to articulate multiple perspectives of a single tableaux. Dolman’s meticulous collages, best imagined as paper paintings, deliver the evocative figuration of a Francis Bacon painting with the blustering calamity of a Popeye cartoon.
The artist casts versions of himself in the tragi-comic scene and each part of the installation gives a new perspective on the scene of this man seated at a table for a meal. We see his dinner and a title directs us to view his chopsticks spinning around an empty bowl like the hands of time. We see the enlarged tiles of his teeth and the disappearing remnants of his food. We see the man himself with his head floating above his torso and his distended, whiskery arm reaching out across the table. For Dolman—in whose work blood, teeth and flesh appear as parasites—the human body is a site of mishap and mayhem; a grotesquerie that we all share. The ceramic vessels that are perched on tonal plinths in front of each painting are deliberately rudimentary objects with an ‘art class’ aesthetic. The overall sensation is that the works could have been made in a 90s classroom-complete with lime Splice. Tempered by a slapstick sensibility, ‘Death Wobbles’ partitions each bodily function to illustrate the comedy and horror of our selves-in the lightest of ways.
Until June 21st
MOP projects, Chippendale
Pic: Chris Dolman, Death Wobbles, 2015, installation view. Courtesy of the artist. Photo credit: Docqment