Melbourne-based Lilli Waters comes from a family line of women artists. Her mother is a
well-regarded botanical artist, and her grandmother was a photojournalist during the Vietnam War and a former Australian of the Year. Both had a strong sense of social activism and a love for nature, and Lilli’s unusual upbringing instilled those same values in her.
Lilli was raised in a handbuilt, mudbrick home on a commune in New South Wales. There was no running water or electricity, but she had the bush as her closest companion throughout her young life. The urge to be close to water and the natural world has stayed with her ever since – and today, she expresses her connection through her fine art photography.
A Lilli Waters image has a painterly quality, with macabre or off-kilter elements enlivened by emotion, a sense of movement, jewel-like colours and deft use of light. Although her personal art practice explores many different subjects, an ongoing preoccupation is capturing women in landscape. With their identities hidden and glowing bodies melding into the natural world around them, they encourage the viewer to look twice, beneath the surface of the work. She photographs women to empower both them and herself, bringing forth their strength and raw, honest edges.
Lilli brings the power of her fine art photography to a diverse range of commercial and private commissions as well, which encompass fashion, portraiture, still life and interiors. Her work has been published in magazines such as Elle, Yen, Art Aesthetica, Vogue Living and Real Living, and her photographs featured in the Universal Pictures films Fifty Shades Darker in 2017 and Fifty Shades Freed in 2018. She was also invited to show works as part of the Venice Biennale Festival in 2017 and 2019 and created a self-portrait for the ABC Art Bites series: Mirror in 2018.
Lilli is artistically represented by Curatorial & Co. and Modern Times.