About me

Narissa Butler
Born Mackay, Queensland Australia
Lives in Melbourne Australia

I am often asked why I paint girls… each of my girls are a little bit of me and a little of what I see.
My first Girl painting appeared in 2002, which was inspired by a photograph of my mother as a child. I was taken with the innocence and awkwardness of the shot and intrigued as to what was going on behind that smile. Women are creatures of such complexity and I am drawn to the vulnerable and awkward. The contradictions of our feelings, how we express our feelings, on our faces and through our body language.
I began with simple poses and use of colour, in what I would describe as naive in expression, and perhaps even graphic in style. To me, my paintings express a sense of longing, of nostalgia, of something missing.
When the first Girl paintings appeared the response to them was overwhelming. I feel as though I am only beginning to reproduce the images I have in my head. Currently most of my girls appear to be heading toward adolescence, for most, a time of extreme self-awareness and awakening. As the Girls continue to grow and change from the earlier series, I have slowly incorporated small accompaniments such as butterflies and birds or chairs, and much to my delight they are still being received with much warmth and affection.

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