Gratrix’s provocative works are heavily imbued with a fun aesthetic and a sense of deprecating laughter. Extending from the grandeur and sacrosanct icons of traditional art canons, contemporary pop-culture and the artist herself, no social hierarchies are absolved as subjects. A thick, almost obscenely excessive application of oil paint forms the layers of make-up and decoration on her subjects’ faces and bodies. Portraiture is a favourite genre, explored primarily in painting, but also in drawing, printmaking, collage and assemblage.
With numerous successful group and solo exhibitions both locally and internationally, Gratrix continues to garner impressive recognition. Important group exhibitions include From Pierneef to Gugulective at the South African National Gallery, Cape Town (2010) and ¡ALPTRAUM!, which travelled to Washington D.C. London, Berlin, Los Angeles and Cape Town (2011). Gratrix presented her first international solo exhibition entitled Everything Ecstatic at Ten Haaf Projects, Amsterdam in 2010. In 2012, SMAC Art Gallery presented My Show – Gratrix’s third solo exhibition. In 2013 she was included in the exhibition The Beautyful Ones, curated by Storm Janse van Rensburg at Galerie Judin in Berlin. In 2014 Die Tankstelle presented Gratrix’s solo exhibition The Berlin Paintings, an exhibition of the artist’s paintings created during her stay in Berlin. In 2016 SMAC Art Gallery hosted her solo exhibition Puppy Love at their Woodstock premises.
Gratrix regularly collaborates with printmaking studio Warren Editions, and has over the years developed a number of engaging unique (once-off) prints in monotype and original fine art prints in etching, silkscreen and woodcut. As a painter, she brings a personal and gestural energy to the printmaking process.