Because one day we will be free

Lipstick paintingThese paintings take their cue from my Swimming at Night series. The blue is from lipstick given to me by a friend, as well as eyeshadow from Dischem. It has a similar texture to lipstick and I love the contrast of the blue with the intense red. I’ve used birds and fishes before, and I’m drawn to the sense of floating in the sky and in water because of the sense of weightlessness and freedom these evoke. So these works (which are intended as a diptych, but make sense individually) are allegories of freedom from the pain and suffering of the world.

Size: 35cmx45cm mounted

Price: Sold to Tessa Reed

Because she went out at night

When I first started painting with lipstick more than ten years ago, the first subjects I tackled were apples. I liked the double meaning of the association with the myth of the Garden of Eden; by using lipstick the medium really was the message. These apples all explore the deep-seated cultural pinning of blame on women for sexual assault: we are the temptresses who lure men to their doom. Rape victims are frequently blamed – because she went out of night (she should have been home), because she wore a short skirt – and both of these paintings of apples explore this theme.

Two lipstick apples

Size: 30cmx30cm mounted

Medium: lipstick on board

Sold to @pekkil_monta – thank you Jack!

Because you matter

I’ve painted lots of hearts with lipstick before. It started after I got dumped by a boyfriend, and I felt sad, and the obvious way to deal with that sadness was to paint broken hearts in which I scratched jagged lines.┬áLater, I painted hearts to raise funds for Lawyers Against Abuse, because hearts code for stereotypes around romance and femininity, and I liked the double meaning. I created more than a hundred of them for Estee Lauder’s end of year gifts to the media.

This heart is different. This heart, and the ones that follow, will be for Anene. They can’t bring her back, but they can raise awareness and funds for other victims of gender-based violence. The message it contains is one for her and for all the girls and women who don’t believe that they matter.

Because you matter.

Because you matter

Because you matter

Size: 30cmx30cm mounted

Medium: Lipstick on board

Price: R500. All proceeds to Lawyers Against Abuse. To purchase, mail sarahjbritten[at] or find me on Twitter @Anatinus