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I would like to acknowledge and pay my respects to the people, the Traditional Custodians of the land on which I live, work and make art. I would like to pay my respects to their Elders, past, present and emerging, and acknowledge all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders, also paying my respects to their Elders, past, present and emerging

Lilli Waters (born 1983, Armidale, NSW) is a fine arts photographer whose work explores the human condition through dramatic images of the female form in haunting, windswept landscapes. A Lilli Waters image has a painterly quality, evoking the Pre-Raphaelites with macabre, foreboding elements, a jewel-like palette and sensitive use of light. Waters makes use of translucent fabrics and long hair to obscure the identities of her subjects, suggesting that the image might be just as much a mirror for the viewer, as it is a portrait.

These images initially appear to represent a romantic idea of beauty and equivalence between the fertility of the female body and the landscape. Yet in the era of ‘Me Too’ and ecological crisis, Waters’ work offers a critical feminine gaze. Her portraits allude to the conundrum of simply being in a woman’s skin: of how to express physical agency and ease in a society that constantly objectifies women and irrevocably wreaks damage on the environment. These are images that convey complex emotions: the interplay of darkness and luminosity, strength and vulnerability, and the possibility for new understandings based on an awareness of our dependence on the earth.

An ecological concern also finds expression in Waters’ underwater still life series which reference Northern Renaissance paintings in lighting and composition. Her underwater works feature live marine creatures amongst rocks, fruit, and flowers to evoke other-worldly landscapes with a palpable feeling of space and slowed time. Waters representations of luxuriant, yet fragile beauty are a reminder of the imminent loss of whole species and ecosystems as a result of climate change.

Lilli’s work has been exhibited to much acclaim in Italy, Germany, Japan, the UK, the US and Australia. Her images have appeared in publications around the globe – including Vogue Living (Aus), Belle Magazine (Aus), Art Aesthetica (UK), Austrian Living (Austria), Jane by the Grey Attic (Aus) and The Opera Magazine (Germany) as well as appeared in feature films, including Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Freed (USA). She was the winner of the Du Rietz Art Award (2021), and a finalist in the Ravenswood Australian Women’s Art Prize (2021), Nillumbik Prize for Contemporary Art (2021), Fisher’s Ghost Art Award (2020), Beautiful Bizarre Art Prize (2020), Du Reitz Art Awards (2020), Percival Photographic Art Prize (2020), National Portrait Prize (2019), Australian Photography Awards (2018) and Art Aesthetica Art Award (2018).

Lilli is represented by Curatorial & Co. Gallery in NSW, and Metro Gallery and Modern Times in Victoria.

Based in Melbourne, Australia.

︎ CV


Finalist, Iris Award, Perth Centre for Photography
Winner, Du Rietz Art Award
Selected, 200 Best Ad Photographers Worldwide 2021/2022, Lurzer’s Archive
Finalist, Naked & Nude Art Prize 
Finalist x 2, Du Rietz Art Awards
Finalist, Ravenswood Australian Women’s Art Prize 
Finalist, Nillumbik Prize for Contemporary Art

Finalist x 3, Australian Photography Awards
Honourable Mention, International Photography Awards
Finalist, Photo Oxford Festival
Finalist, Fisher’s Ghost Art Award
Finalist, Beautiful Bizarre Art Award
Highly Commended, The Mono Awards
Finalist, Du Reitz Art Awards
Finalist, Percival Photographic Portrait Prize
Finalist, Biennal Adelaide Park Lands Art Prize

Honourable Mention, Budapest International Photo Awards
Finalist, Australian Photography Awards
Finalist, Now Contemporary Art Prize
Finalist, Beautiful Bizarre Art Prize
Finalist, Iris Awards, Perth Centre for Photography
Commended, The Mono Awards
Finalist, Incinerator Art Award
Highly Commended, Australasia’s Top Emerging Photographers Awards
Finalist, National Photographic Portrait Prize

Finalist, Australian Photography Awards
Finalist, Art Aesthetica Art Award

Finalist, Contemporary Art Awards
Finalist, National Still Life Award
Finalist, Click 17, Brunswick St Gallery
Semi-Finalist, Head On Portrait Prize

Semi-Finalist, Head On Portrait Prize
Finalist, Head On Portrait Prize

Highly Commended, Qantas Soya Photography Award

Highly Commended, Doug Moran National Contemporary Photographic Prize
Semi-Finalist x 2, Doug Moran National Contemporary Photographic Prize
Highly Commended, Qantas Soya Photography Award

Winner, Focus Project People’s Choice

Photographic Folio of the Year, Photographic Imaging College


Orpheus: Opening 2nd - 26th February, Metro Gallery, Melbourne VIC

Disenchantments of the World, Curatorial & Co. Gallery, Sydney, NSW
Anthropocene: The Age of Humans, Virtual Exhibition, Curatorial & Co. Gallery

Reawaken, Craig’s Royal Hotel in collaboration with the Ballarat International Foto Bienanale, VIC
Untitled, Metro Gallery, Melbourne VIC
Others Dream, Modern Times, Melbourne VIC
Things of Fire and Ash, Remembered, Victoria Police Museum, VIC

Coral Lands, Saint Cloche Gallery, Sydney NSW

Plastic Fish, Junior Space, Melbourne VIC

Anja, Red Gallery, Melbourne VIC

Things of Fire and Ash, Victoria Police Museum, Melbourne VIC, touring Nationally

She Raw, Edmund Pearce Gallery, Melbourne VIC
She Raw, Blak Dot Gallery, Melbourne VIC


Darlings, Curatorial & Co. Gallery, Sydney 
Naked & Nude Art Prize, Manning Regional Gallery, NSW 
Du Rietz Art Awards, Gympie Regional Gallery, QLD 
Flora, Heritage Hill Museum and Historic Gardens, City of Greater Dandenong, VIC
Art in the Plague Year, UCR Arts, California Museum of Photography
Ilford CCP Salon, CCP, Melbourne

Darlings, Curatorial & Co. Gallery, Sydney
The Laneway Gallery, in collaboration with Jane by the Grey Attic & Melbourne GPO
Women and Photography: Ways of Seeing and Being Seen, OVADA Gallery, Photo Oxford Festival, UK
Fisher’s Ghost Art Award, Campbelltown Arts Centre, NSW
ICP: Concerned: Global images for Global crisis, International Center of Photograhy, New York, USA
Talismans, Rafts, Mementos, Modern Times, Melbourne
Here With Me, Curatorial & Co. Gallery, Sydney
Du Rietz Art Awards, Gympie Regional Gallery, QLD
Percival Portrait Prize, Perc Tucker Regional Gallery, Townsville
Loud and Luminous, Contact Sheet Gallery, Sydney 
These Days: Works in Isolation, Virtual Exhibition

Summer Group Exhibition, Metro Gallery, Melbourne
Chapter One, Pix on Location, Sydney
Ritual Practice, Modern Times, Melbourne
Rose Rouge Kaisu, Tokyo, Japan
Midyear Selection Exhibition, Metro Gallery, Melbourne
Winter Group Exhibition, Metro Gallery, Melbourne
Loud & Luminous, Head On Photo Festival, Contact Sheet Gallery, Sydney
National Photographic Portrait Prize, National Portrait Gallery, NSW, touring Nationally
Sun Celebrates Her, Sun Studios, Melbourne
Her Wild Dreaming, Schoolhouse Studios, Melbourne
Fifty Squared Art Prize, Brunswick Street Gallery

PCP Collective, Perth Centre for Photography
ILFORD CCP Salon, Contemporary Centre of Photography
Summer Group Exhibition, Metro Gallery
The Luxury of Landscape Pilazzo Pandolfini, Tuscany, Italy
The Last Line of Defence Besser Space, Melbourne
Candyland for CanTeen Art Auction, NAB Graduate Fundraiser, Melbourne
Hyper 222, Roslyn Gallery, Melbourne
Contemporary Art Awards 

STILL National Still Life Award, Coffs Harbour Regional Gallery, NSW
Her Way 5 Rankins Lane Gallery, Melbourne

BlümchenSex Palmengarten, Frankfurt, Germany
Phantom Paradise, Saint Cloche Gallery, Sydney

Keeping Company: Saltwater Manly Art Gallery, Sydney
Unreal Head On Photo Festival, M2 Gallery, Sydney
Anja Pop-Up, Leonard St, Melbourne

Head On Photo Festival, Sydney

Stockroom Carbon Black Gallery, Melbourne
Art in Mind, The Brick Lane Gallery, London
Head On Photo Festival, State Library of NSW


2020 Awarded the Creative Victoria Sustaining Arts Grant
2018 Featured on Art Bites: Mirror, ABC documentary series
2017 Works featured in the feature films, Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Freed
2015 ‘Anja’ book launch, Blak Dot gallery
2013 Speaker, Semi-Permanent Creative Global Conference, Melbourne and Brisbane
2012 ‘She Raw, The 41 Women’s Portraits’ book launch Asia-Pacific Photobook Archive


Pétula Magazine, Germany
Normal Magazine, France
Real Living Magazine, Australia
Jane by the Grey Attic Magazine, Australia
‘Mass Isolation Australia’ publication, Ballarat International Foto Biennale

Belle Magazine, Australia 
Jane by the Grey Attic Magazine, Australia
Beautiful Bizarre Magazine, Australia

Austrian Living Magazine, Austria
Belle Magazine, Australia
The Opéra Magazine, Vol. VIII, Germany
Vogue Living Magazine, Australia

Capture Magazine, Australia
Noblesse China Magazine, China
Photo Essay Nature & Human Beings Future Now, 100 Contemporary Artists, USA
Real Living Magazine, Australia

Das Magazin, USA
The Opera Magazine, Vol. VI, Germany 
The Age, Sunday Life, Australia

Yen Magazine, Issue 83, Australia
Australian House & Garden Magazine, Australia
Yen Magazine, Issue 83, Australia

Tallulah Magazine, UK
Art Aesthetica Magazine, UK
Melbourne Observer, Australia
Blink Magazine, USA
Interview Elle Magazine, Australia

Daphne programme for La Monnaie, Belgium
Book Cover, La Sage Femme, Katja Kettu, France
Yen Magazine, Issue 71, Australia
The Opera Magazine, Vol. III, Germany
Kai’outi Magazine, USA
The Issue Magazine, USA
Spook Magazine, Australia

Peppermint Magazine, Issue 14, Australia
Yen Magazine, Issue 62, Australia
Minx Magazine, USA 
Rattapallax Magazine, USA
Fine Line Magazine, USA
The Modern and Contemporary Art, France
Fashion Trend Magazine, Australia

Yen Magazine, Issue 56, Australia


Contemporary Art Collectors
Beware Magazine

Vogue Living
The Design Files
Hunter & Folk
Australian Arts Review
Artdoc Magazine

Art Thy Neighbour
Modern Times Journal
The Age
The Design Files

Feature Shoot
The Design Files
Vogue Living
The Design Files
We Are Scout
Irisi Magazine

The Design Files
Peppermint Magazine
The Design Files

Yen Magazine
Label Magazine, Poland
Studio Home, NZ 
Fubiz, France
Gooood, China
Trendland, USA
Juxtapoz Magazine, USA
Plain Magazine
Looks like Film

Aesthetica Magazine
Melbourne Arts Club
Yen Magazine
Australian Arts Review
Tweed Daily News

Gorgeous Artgirl
The Quiet Front
Chromatic Watch
iGNANT Magazine, Germany
Thisispaper Magazine, Poland
GUP Magazine

Shock Blast
Flanelle Magazine
My Modern Met
City Like You, UK
Studio Home, NZ
Milkbar Magazine
Clik Clik, France
Australian Infront
File Magazine

Interviews Aloud
We are Selecters
Acclaim Magazine
Beautiful Savage
Frankie Magazine
EB Cult, USA
The Age
Eat Read Love
Empty Kingdom, USA

“The windswept drama of the carefully composed, haunting landscapes of Melbourne-based artist Lilli Waters is interspersed with predominantly female figures whose incandescent skin,
enshrouded in jewel-toned fabrics and illuminated by firelight, offsets the water-logged darkness of their surroundings.
At first glance the photographs appear laden with doomed romance and a macabre eroticism. It is only on closer inspection that the viewer begins to glean a message of empowerment.
The images are delicate and audacious, offering insight into the complexity of their inhabitants, just as the elemental background evokes a sense of foreboding.
Waters challenges the conditioning of women in contemporary culture, which she attributes to an internalisation of sexism.
Through her photographs, Waters encourages self-acceptance, emotional awareness and defiant celebration in her subjects and, subsequently, in herself.”

Art Aesthetica, UK


©2020 Lilli Waters. All works and content copyright Lilli Waters. All rights reserved.