Sky Parra is an emerging portrait and figuration painter based in Meanjin (Brisbane). Interested in the humanising materiality of paint, her fleshy works explore the emotive narratives of exchange and empathy. Investigating themes of truth and ontology, Parra’s practice loosely constitutes a site for existential enquiry, jockeying the ineffable human experience in a bid to record the passing of time and uncover the facets of our personal relationships.

Working predominantly on a large scale, Parra uses a gestural impasto application to render naturalistic depictions of her subjects. Each gesture, deliberate and charged, is juxtaposed against raw, undeveloped areas of canvas to expose and emphasise the boldness and agency of the paint. It is at the intersection of expansive empty space and the material scape that the viewer is confronted with the multi-dimensionality of the subject, evoking a sense of reflection, quietude and intimacy. Parra uses the language of photography to create snapshots that isolate and hold moments – suspended in time. Absorbing the complexities of her subject and herself, the works do not pose as reality, but own their untruth – making visible their fabrication.

Parra is currently exploring her practice through the Bachelor of Fine Art program at the Queensland College of Art.