“Exhausted” (2016)

Acrylic yarn and mixed media
“Test Drive the Future”, Magdalen College School, Oxford; part of Oxford Festival of Arts and Low Carbon Oxford Week
19 June 2016

The overall aim of Particulart is to engage people with environmental and social issues and challenge the status quo through the power of knitting, science, and public art. In addition, “Exhausted” aimed to promote public awareness and provoke reflection on urban air quality, through a quirky display enabling playful interaction. It appeared at “Test Drive the Future”, an exhibition of electric vehicles, that will help solve the problem of air pollution. But we do need to think about where that electricity will come from, so it appeared in combination with the “Up in the Air” pop-up, about carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases causing climate change.

questionAir quality

Traffic emissions are now the major threat to clean air. Petrol and diesel vehicles emit a wide variety of pollutants: carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, particulate matter, and volatile organic compounds. These have an impact on our health, causing and worsening heart and lung diseases. Find out more…

questionClimate change

Over the last century, human activity has increased the greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, and this is causing the climate to warm. Find out more…


The exhibition included five pollutants from petrol and diesel vehicles. Find out more about their chemistry, and their impacts on human health and the environment.

notesExhibition notes

View and download the main interpretation provided with the exhibition.


Knit your own air pollution, with patterns for: atoms, bonds, and how they come together into particles.

If you don’t have time to knit, you could make pompom pollution instead. As part of the exhibition, we made pompoms with children.


A news feed of updates on the exhibition.

cameraPhotos & videos

Photos of the installation at “Test Drive the Future”.

Thanks go to…

“Exhausted” was generously supported by sponsorship from BMW North Oxford in association with Oxford Festival of the Arts. It appeared under the umbrella of Low Carbon Oxford Week run by Oxford City Council. Many thanks to Jenny Carr of the City Council and Anaïs Higgins of the Arts Festival for the invitation and support.

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