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Griffith University Art Museum hosts Chantal Fraser’s first solo exhibition

Griffith University Art Museum hosts Chantal Fraser’s first solo exhibition


This winter, Queenslanders and the like are invited to visit Chantal Fraser: The Ascended at the Griffith University Art Museum (GUAM) from 15 June to 2 September.

Fraser is a Brisbane-based Samoan artist inherently influenced by her lived experience, which motivates her to employ body adornment and ornamentation as artistic vessels in which to interrogate the structures of capitalism and state authorities.

Fraser’s debut solo exhibition in an Australian public institution is a compilation of photography, video performance and sculpture resulting from recent research into capitalism and violence in Australia, alongside reflexive pieces involving life as a Samoan-Australian artist in Queensland.

The exhibition at GUAM features a new five-channel video performance work called The Ascended, in addition to Fraser’s ongoing sculpture series Riot Gear which started in 2015. 

Chantal Fraser, Crucible Safety Yellow (2023), leather welding gloves, adhesive, acrylic crystals,
rhinestones, 38.5 x 19 x 15cm (each). Courtesy of the artist. Photography by Louis Lim

The exhibition reflects an overall examination into the aesthetic properties of power and the experiences of Fraser’s family and community in class-based discrimination.

Fraser is hopeful her exhibition will generate curiosity in patrons. “I am thrilled to be exhibiting my first mid-career major solo exhibition at GUAM. The Ascended is a significant body of newly commissioned video and sculpture about divinity, agency, glory, power and resistance,” says Fraser. 

Curator of GUAM Naomi Evans is delighted to share Fraser’s newest works with the public.

“For over two decades Chantal Fraser’s beautiful sculptures and photographs have been widely lauded in art circles,” says Evans. 

Chantal Fraser, Fantômas Gold (2023), welding helmet, adhesive, acrylic crystals, rhinestones, metallic
glass shards, 30 x 26 x 21.5cm. Courtesy of the artist. Photo: Louis Lim

The exhibition also pays host to a dedicated community-making space which will welcome Samoan, Te Moana Nui and additional community groups to a co-curated program of workshops, performances, meetings and private sessions. 

GUAM will also display Fraser’s first major publication from her practice – a curatorial essay from Naomi Evans featuring input from leading curators and academics Doctor Lana Lopesi (MNZM), Shuddhabrata Sengupta and Brian Fuata.

Photography by Louis Lim.

Featured Image: Chantal Fraser, Body Amulets 1 – 8 (2023), aluminium plate, steel, wire, tin, brass, metal screws, nails,
string, hazard tape, adhesive, acrylic crystals, rhinestones, mirrored glass, 100 x 60 x 20cm (each). Courtesy of the
artist. Photography by Louis Lim.

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