Thursday, 14 April 2016

Gore Fx

Recently, as I was walking along Dorset Square one Saturday morning on the my way to the cinema,  I passed an innocuous sandwich board sign. It sat on the path along with a couple of other similar signs and was there to promote a shop down one of the arcades that lead onto Dorset road. It wasn’t until I had a closer look and read it that I thought “That looks interesting”. Peering down into the arcade, the bright sunlight playing tricks on the eyes made it seem a lot darker than normal and all I could make out was a figure  about half way down. As I ventured down and as my eyes adjusted , closer inspection revealed a mannequin dressed as a zombie nurse reaching out with one flesh less skeletal arm and a mouth dripping with blood, around her neck was a sign stating: COME IN, WE’RE DEAD.

How could I resist.

 I walked into a small shop space whose d├ęcor could only be described as early dungeon and the walls were adorned with all kinds of oddities: severed body parts, mounted heads and some recognizable icons from famous horror movies.

Danny Wale
Welcome to GORE FX. A shop full of all things macabre whether it be masks, statues or something to freak out unwanted visitors for your mantelpiece.
Proprietor and local resident Danny Wale opened Gore Fx just before Christmas 2015 after the demand of making and selling his creations from home became too much of a strain on his space and privacy and it has proven to be a successful decision. A massive fan of the horror genre Danny has always had the passion and skills to create his models and about nine years ago decided to explore doing it as something more than a hobby and six years ago started selling and hiring out pieces through a website. Totally self-taught Danny is a creator of some skill and produces all items himself. This includes design, sculpture, mold making for latex masks and statues as well as painting and finishing techniques. He will often be seen working on one of his creations behind the counter.

Most of Danny’s work begins with a sculpture either out of a special modelling clay called Clayette or the more common Wed Clay which very popular with all the major special effects houses in Hollywood. A piece may take Danny anywhere between three and twelve hours and each piece is as individual as a snowflake due to the variations in the handmade process and painting. A look around his shop will find it is filled with oddities that pay tribute to some of the more popular horror franchisee as well as collectable items such as body parts in jars, heads on plates or simply necklaces adorned with severed fingers.
Sample of some of the works hanging in the shop.
Danny also promotes his unique products at the popular culture conventions and has had his pieces used in movies as well as music videos and album covers. He also is often asked to commissions from private clients.
Many older readers might think who would be interested in this sort of morbidity, but horror has always been big business with directors like Lord of the Rings’ Peter Jackson and Spiderman’s Sam Raimi both getting their start in low budget “slasher” films. Zombies are big business with TVs the Walking Dead and movies like Shaun of the Dead, Zombieland and WWZ doing huge business. Did you know that nearly every major city in Australia has at least one Zombie walk where on a certain weekend up to five thousand fans dress up rather extravagant make up and clothes and stagger through the streets for fun? There is quite a subculture of horror fans that you’d be quite surprised how popular the genre and its related areas really are and have been for many years.
 Having a unique shop like Gore Fx gives a break to the same old stores we expect to see around Boronia and brings people from outside the area to shop. It’s exciting to see something a little bit different and I dare you to have a look for yourself. You can visit Gore Fx most Saturdays at this point in time at Shop 10 AEC Arcade in Boronia or visit the Facebook page at for updates. I double dare ya.
Life like hearts
Danny and Model
Mini zombie busts
Mini skulls
Sculpture in the works
Mounted horror

originally published in the BBCN issue 244 May 2016

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