Chris Casali

Chris Casali’s process driven practice employs an exploratory and intuitive approach to the creation of highly detailed and considered paintings. Her work, guided by the gesture of abstract expressionism, considers the influence of the external world on the internal self.

Her practice does not conform to a particular theoretic framework, rather she is guided by various personal experiences and memories as well as her ongoing fascination with detail. Her deep understanding of the materiality of paint allows her works to evolve dramatically over time. She straddles the tension between push and pull in her abstract marks on the canvas until a form is finally revealed. This form often hints towards the natural environment and fractured landscapes that are now obscured and disconnected in form.

This process navigates the depiction of the conscious and subconscious, it also hints towards an active withdrawal from the world, a coping mechanism that uses meditative practices that are both emotional and intuitive. While the detail in the works created by layered and deliberate marks can overwhelm the viewer, they also pose invitation to their experiences and interpretation.


Concurrently alongside her professional painting practice, Casali has held an extensive career in Arts Education and Management, including the position of Head of Visual Arts and Ceramics at TAFE NSW, Sydney Region.

Formal study attained includes a Master of Fine Art with Excellence from the University of New South Wales (2018); a Diploma of Fine Arts from the National Art School, Sydney (1994) and a Diploma of Graphic Design from Enmore Design Centre, Sydney TAFE (1998).

Casali’s work has been featured in solo and group shows in Australia and internationally, including Mexico, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Italy, and China. She has been represented in numerous art prizes including: the Ravenswood Australian Women’s Art Prize (Finalist, Professional Category, 2023); Dobell Drawing Prize 22# (2021); KAAF Art Prize (2019); 3rd Taiwan Watercolour Award Exhibition (2019); Ravenswood Australian Women’s Art Prize (Winner - Emerging Category, 2019); Splash McClelland Contemporary Watercolour Award (2021, 2018); the Biennial International Marche d’Acqua Watercolour Prize (2018); the Kedumba Drawing Award (2015, 2016); The Macquarie Group Emerging Artist Prize (People’s Choice Award and Highly Commended, 2016); Tim Olsen Drawing Award (2016); Fishers Ghost Drawing/Printmaking Award (2014) and the Winsor & Newton Emerging Artist Prize (Highly Commended, 2013).

Her work is held in public and private collections in Australia and internationally, including: the Paper and Watermark Museum, Fabriano, Italy; the Kedumba Collection of Drawings; the Macquarie Group Collection; and the Ravenswood Australian Women’s Art Collection.