"Life is Art".
A few years ago, Elizabeth’s life changed dramatically when she was hit by a car resulting in significant body and brain injuries, an event that has deeply etched itself into her life and art.
Elizabeth has always been inspired by the Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, known for her self-portraits and whose own art was intrinsically linked to her physical and emotional trauma. Frida’s paintings were often filled with bright colours and symbolic imagery, reflecting her life experience with themes of pain, struggle and overcoming adversity. Much like Frida, symbols and symbolism are also important to Elizabeth. In her studio she is surrounded by natural objects, mystical symbols, star maps and flowers. These are carefully arranged, tended and meaningful on a variety of levels known only to Elizabeth.
Elizabeth’s artworks are focused on the self, they are fine and detailed, contained yet expressive, colourful yet subdued. Elizabeth’s artistic self-expression, her art-making, is both powerful and empowering, telling the story of Elizabeth’s commitment to the transformative force of art, mysticism, and meditation in healing trauma. It is her emotional release and the foundation of her growing resilience in the face of ongoing pain and loss. It is inspirational, promoting healing in others through its relatability.
Elizabeth’s accident has changed her life and art in tremendous ways, both good and bad, yin and yang, sun and moon, with darkness and with light. Much like Frida Kahlo, Elizabeth’s life and art are testimony to her personal resilience and dedication to her craft.
In conversation, Elizabeth references a quote by artist Louise Bourgeois:
“Art is restoration: the idea is to repair the damages that are inflicted in life, to make something that is fragmented – which is what fear and anxiety do to a person – into something whole.”
Louise Faulkner is a photographer based in Newcastle, NSW, on Awabakal Country. She and Elizabeth have been friends for over twenty years and counting.
We Are is a multi-location multimedia photographic experience highlighting creative women of Newcastle, commencing on Wednesday March 8th 2023 (International Women’s Day) and culminating in a celebration event at The Lock-Up on Friday March 24th.
We Are is a portrait project featuring 20 WH!P Collective members turning their lenses towards fellow female and non-binary creatives to highlight the many benefits that a thriving and diverse artistic community bring to our region.
WH!P (Women* of the Hunter !n Photography) was founded in 2020 to embrace and create opportunities for professional photographers from the Hunter region by leveraging the combined skills, experience and credentials of its members. Fostering a culture of support, celebration, exchange, education, advocacy, action, enjoyment, play and growth, it hopes to actively raise the profile of contemporary photographic excellence, education and experimentation in the Hunter Region. WH!P works collaboratively with those both within and beyond the local area who share our belief that the world should be shown through a lens as diverse as the real world.
*all references to women/woman is inclusive of gender diverse people
WH!P’s logos and graphics designed by Laura Kent
"Elizabeth’s artistic self-expression, her art-making, is both powerful and empowering, telling the story of Elizabeth’s commitment to the transformative force of art, mysticism, and meditation in healing trauma”.