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Aunty Addie by Denise Cross

Aunty Addie

Denise Cross

About the artwork and sitter

Adelaide Saylor, otherwise known as ‘Aunty Addie,’ has helped give many young Brisbane girls a second chance in life, improving their education, self-confidence and purpose.

This portrait brings to light her ‘selflessness, beauty, joy, wisdom, strength, determination, earthiness, reflectiveness, faithfulness and optimism, both implicitly and explicitly.’

While working tirelessly to help improve the lives of young women, Aunty Addie was walking through her own challenges; most tragically dealing with breast cancer, along with the passing away of her father, brother and husband.

The finer details within the painting reveals her personal story, and what she has done for so many young girl’s lives throughout Brisbane and beyond.

About the artist

Denise Cross has been a finalist in a number of art competitions and has regularly contributed works to both solo and group exhibitions. She has been a secondary art teacher for 23 years, completing a BFA and M.Ed. She currently teaches visual arts.

“The Gardenia fragrance continues to permeate the garden, a constant reminder of her forever soulmate."

Behind the scenes

As a gesture of deep appreciation for helping a family member through depression, this family built the bench and back yard of Aunty Addie’s home filled with gorgeous foliage and flowers, after the passing of her husband. Much of her healing took place in this sanctuary, as she tended to this garden. Her dog Lulu stands proudly beside her; a gift chosen by her husband for her 50th birthday as a symbol of protection. Unknown to them at this time, two weeks later her husband passed away. The white Gardenia’s hold special significance; a reminder to him of his mother’s perfume as a small boy. The Gardenia fragrance continues to permeate the garden, a constant reminder of her forever soulmate.