Out of Control

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    Photo: Stephen Pitkin/Pitkin Studio
Tin, wood, string, soil, oil, enamel, spray paint, and Splash Zone compound on canvas on wood
75 x 123.5 x 6 inches
Collection of
Ackland Art Museum
Museum purchase and gift of the Souls Grown Deep Foundation

One of Dial’s most vivid and inventive works, Out of Control, came directly from the repeated images of widespread  fires in Southern California. A powerful sense of conflagration arises as if spontaneously in Out of Control, which is, strangely, also one of the most compositionally reductive of his works. This work exemplifies Dial’s growing command of his materials and structure; as he ages, his work becomes ever more intense, whether by means of complex layering or through compositions that are relatively unified and monolithic. The simple fact of the materials used in this construction—much of it is wood slatting—helps to create the sensation of  fiery devastation. This is an especially fresh example of an artistic idea that sprang straight from events of the day. —Jane Livingston