“Orpheus” by Photographer Lilli Waters

A series of ten large-scale images elaborately constructed underwater by Melbourne-based photographer Lilli Waters. Featuring shells, fish, flowers, and the female form, “Orpheus” presents a dark waterscape that feels other-worldly. The project is an exploration of the human condition — hope and despair, social and environmental consciousness — through dramatic images of women amidst haunting landscapes. While such a combination may appear to reiterate conventional idealizations of women’s bodies or their romanticized connection to the natural world, Waters’ encourages a critical gaze. Her intention is to grapple with the very difficulty of being in a woman’s skin: of navigating one’s physical agency in a society that constantly objectifies you. A society that similarly wreaks irrevocable damage to the shared environment as well.

“We are living through an age where our lens on the world must constantly shift and refocus as new ideas, crises, social movements and the natural environment rapidly changes. A level of poetic consciousness is required to navigate this new world and at times hopeless landscape. Orpheus was a poet, a prophet and a musician in Greek mythology who at the end of his life worshipped no god but the sun. For these images, I wanted Orpheus to be a woman who is glistening oracle-like, asleep on a dark sandscape. The viewer is invited to embrace their own mortality and energy for change simultaneously. To dare to be one’s own illumination—like a transient point of light in a night sky.”

See more images from “Orpheus” below!





















Lilli Waters’s Website

Lilli Waters on Instagram

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