My studio practice throughout this year has largely been an expression of internal dialogue and emotions translated onto canvas through a surrealist lens. My current project focuses primarily on the notion of infantilisation and hyper-sexualisation as coexisting ideals which are weaponised against young women, minorities and non-male identifying people. The works created within this theme are a direct reflection of my personal experiences with men and dating culture as a young woman. As my height and youthfulness are frequently seen as vulnerabilities to many, the comments myself (and many others) have repeatedly received elicit feelings of rage and sheer frustration. As such, my works normally involve themes of nudity and vulnerability, as well as voyeurism and perpetual gaze. The figures I paint are always a general abstract self-portrait of sorts—a depiction of my inner self and fear of being perceived yet a constant awareness of being surveyed.


A young woman is standing in front of three oil paintings lined up horizontally on a white brick gallery wall. She is smiling and looking away from the camera.

A baby pink oil painting featuring a screaming infant's head towards the right side of the canvas. Connected to the head is a basket, much like hot air balloon. To the right of the figure is a pink fleshy mass, with a small palm tree resting atop it.

A nude, bald-headed figure is situated in the centre of the painting, depicted from the torso upwards. The figure has their arm outstretched and palm open, with a naked rat resting atop it. The rat gazes into the eyes of the figure. A grey castle rests on the head of the centred person, with flowered vines emerging from the castle and surrounding the figure and rat in an arched frame. In the background is a pale blue sky, resting above rolling green hills and a river. Large silhouetted, alien-like figures roam atop the hills.

Rose Smith