“Stay there long enough, it is forced upon you to go beyond the rational mind, to face your fear and your own mortality.” – Murray Fredericks
Murray Fredericks has been drawn again and again to the extraordinary location of Lake Eyre in his pursuit to understand the overwhelming emptiness and powerful emotional resonance of remote land and sky. Camping alone for weeks at a time, Fredericks’ spiritual and mental experience of this environment is encapsulated in his immersive abstract landscapes that bear witness to the transcendent capacity of the natural world.
Array is the final cycle in Murray Fredericks’ acclaimed SALT Project. In these new works the artist intersects endless space through the ethereal reflective quality of mirrors. Rather than employing the mirror as a symbol of self-reflection, Fredericks redirects our gaze away from ourselves and into the immense environment. His translations of the language of landscape verge on otherworldly; reflections hover together as geometric forms, apertures or portals, offering a dual experience of looking both into another realm and out, as the lake’s glass-like surface mirrors an infinite space above. In one moment, an ensemble of sky and surface meld into a symphony of stars under Fredericks’ powerful control. These works plunge the viewer into a mesmerising spatial gestalt as Fredericks dissolves the contours of the landscape into a limitless optical deception. Place is defined by boundless empty space, as his own reflections on landscape mediates that space. Through offering the viewer an emotional engagement with the environment, we see evidence of greater forces at work. There is a sense of release as the self dissolves into the light and infinity.