The artist must impart as much of himself into the work as is physically possible; he must be present in the work wherever it hangs.
The Fire Sermon is a collection of heavily worked, and intelligently crafted paintings; it extols the artist’s skill and commitment.
The work is deeply layered, created over many months of considered application; oils and industrial paints are applied in thick swathes and left to harden. They ferment and age in a state of curing, until they begin to crack and peel.
Dale Inglis then intervenes with a stage of intense deconstruction; torrid blasts from a blowtorch, invasive scratching and scraping uncover the panels’ indelible history.
The layers intertwine, text is applied and obscured, colours are revealed, paint is reapplied or thinned out, the artist’s process is a cycle of building and breaking; developing the projection of a creative destruction.
Dark cityscapes emerge from these complicated layers, a structured foreground that gives the work a depth beyond pure abstraction.
The habitual nature of city life and its daily river crossings has ingrained an offshore, up-stream perspective on Inglis’ consciousness; the location of this river and bridge are a chance and not a subject.
The definite shape and repetitive inclusion of the bridge create a flowing connection, a thread, throughout the show.
The collected body of paintings display a clear progression, from the founding ideas of built up colour and shape hinting at structure in the title piece The Fire Sermon and its counterpart South West Wind.
Through to the highly developed and intricately detailed Colonnade where text is partially hidden, structural forms are exact and the tone is well balanced.
There are many instances of chanced creation in the paintings that develop naturally during the many processes and many months of layering and waiting and destructing.
This chance element provides unintentional connections that lead the viewer through a subjective translation of the work’s narrative.
Hints and allusions are rife in all aspects of this work, from the visual landscape and ambiguous titles to the obscured text and technical references.
With each subjective suggestion a new layer is imprinted onto the paintings’ elaborately deconstructed but brilliantly luminescent surfaces.
The Fire Sermon is a relentlessly intricate exploration into the creative and destructive processes of aesthetic realisations; it provokes discussion and demands presence.