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Contaminated – Exhibition Opening

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Event description

Join us in the Outer Space Main Gallery to celebrate the opening of Contaminated by Norton Fredericks.

About the exhibition: 

‘Contaminated’ is an exploration between materials and processes responding to sites that are highly contaminated with the environmental toxins: Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAFs), otherwise known as 'Forever Chemicals'.

Norton began by collecting water, soil, and plant samples from contaminated sites using the Australian Map of PFAS as a guide across Northern New South Wales and South East Queensland to investigate how these chemicals interact with their materials, including fabrics, bronze, and paper. 

This work is the intersection between science and art examining the impact of these pervasive chemicals on our waterways, land and body systems, this work will explore the chemical reactions that are created by site-specific variables. Through chemistry and drawing parallels between contaminated river systems and the human body, this work examines the complexity of human health related to environmental issues. 

Norton has used a mixture of ancient, historical and contemporary techniques including botanical dyeing, basketry, cyanotype and bronze metal clays to create this body of work.

WHEN: Friday 5 April, 6-9pm
WHERE: Outer Space Gallery, 420 Brunswick St, Judith Wright Arts Centre, Fortitude Valley

About the artist:⁠

Norton Fredericks is a queer visual artist and workshop facilitator who has mixed European and Aboriginal Australian (Murri) heritage and currently lives on Kombumerri Country, Gold Coast. Their work is at the intersection of science and art, exploring the dialogue between environmental sustainability, queer ecologies and First Nations knowledges. Investigating these themes through research and practice-based artwork Norton explores historical and ancient techniques in a contemporary way that is often site specific, responding to place and Country. As Norton examines how elements interact with materials, they use the mechanics of natural fibres, organic chemistry, microscopy, and metals to imbue their work with geographical memory. There is deep consideration for sustainable materials and due to their relational approach, their work aims to inspire deeper environmental care.

@retritus /

For more information on the exhibition, please click here.

Cover Image: 'Cobaki Lake', paper, 2023. Cyanotype photograph of Cobaki Lake, Tweed Heads, developed in PFAS contaminated water and toned using tannins extracted from native plants.

Outer Space is supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland, the Australian Government through Creative Australia and the Outer Space community.

Queensland Government logo, Australian Government logo, Creative Australia logo

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