Nina's Story

Nina Hurr got into art as a way of calming her chaotic mind while in hospital, but it’s grown into a passion that brings peace and balance to her life. 

“I was given a piece of paper and asked to draw everything I felt. Before I knew it the whole page was full and it was like I’d cleared out all the junk in my mind. Since then, I’ve been doing art on paper and recycled surfboards using textas and paint. Now I’m just getting into graphic design and digital art.” 

Nina describes the experience of being involved in last year’s Recovered Futures Art Exhibition as particularly special. 

“I spent a lot of time looking intently at everyone’s art and I was struck by just how diverse the exhibition was. I feel I can relate to the other artists’ work because they all have such depth, you can tell many of them were going through an intense time.” 

Having faced her own battles for years, Nina appreciates the solidarity and camaraderie of standing side by side with other artists who understand hardship. 

“I have spent quite a bit of time in hospital with mania and psychosis. I refused to accept that there was anything wrong for a long time and would stop taking my medication. Finally I did get to a place of acceptance and found an excellent medication that works well for me.” 

In the seaside town of Byron Bay Nina has found her happy place, splitting her time between surfing, art and volunteering with the local youth centre. 

“If I need a break, I can take one. If I’ve got a lot of energy that day, we can work with that too. The system we’ve got in place works well. Everything I love, the kids seem to love too. One day we’ll be doing skateboard art, the next I’ll be teaching them to DJ. I guess I’m a big kid at heart! It’s a lot of fun.” 

Nina surrounded by her recycled surfboard art in her hometown of Byron Bay.

Nina’s art was some of the most remarked upon of the exhibition, each with so many small, joyous features that you see something new every time. The opening event guests clearly agreed - voting swiftly with their feet! 

“I was stoked to sell both my pieces during the opening event. I turned up on the Saturday and they both had red dots! It’s really cool when you can see that people like and appreciate your art – that was a real buzz for me.” 

To see Nina’s art is to see Nina. She’s a relaxed, friendly person who is insistent on making the world a brighter, more cheerful place. 

“I have been through a lot, but I’ve finally found the recipe that works to keep me well. Art is a big part of that, and I’m just grateful that people seem to like my stuff. I want to contribute to a world where all people can feel hopeful for their futures through loving and accepting the lives they have.”