Portraits - The Three Girls by Audrey GARRATT

The Three Girls – their stories
Hilda is a part-maori girl who lives in Akaroa on the Banks Peninsula of the South Island of New Zealand. She is related to my daughter-in-law and it was at my son's wedding to Areana in 2002 that I first met Hilda who had recently married a talented maori master carver. She was blissfully happy. The next time I saw her was 6 years later at the wedding of Areana's sister. She was by herself and things had changed. I have painted her holding on to a vacant chair because her lover had gone, captivated by another. The little cottage decaying on a hillside represents her dreams of family life, wrecked by the circumstances that had been her lot. Yet, I sensed a strength in her I'd not seen before, and as she turned to face the future, she displays a hope of something lasting and more precious to come. Indeed, that is the case, she is now the mother of twin boys.

Melissa became the cook at River Valley Tourist Lodge in Taihape, New Zealand. I painted her at a turning point in her life and show her contemplation as she is seated beside the river that has been such a huge part of her life. But, life is not a constant, change for her was occurring and she had decisions to make. Hers was to leave the river where she was born and had been raised and go to Europe, seeking to discover just who the real Melissa was. She has since returned and is about to become a mother, a role she is eagerly looking forward to.

I met Rose during a water-painting course and have entitled this painting, 'It's getting late, Rose.' She was completely absorbed in her work. The afternoon sun cast a reflecting glow from the paper to her features, otherwise shadowed by the brim of her hat and this seemed to enhance the deep enjoyment she was getting from the action of painting.

There appears to be a conversation between these three girls that involves the viewer and I’m very pleased that they were sold to a resident of Hamburg, Germany who continues to exhibit them together .

Portfolio Entries