In my autonomous work I like to study themes such as time and space and bring lost histories or herstories back to the present. In my work I often make use of anachronistic facets. I add elements (eg persons, concepts, events, objects, customs, etc.) that do not necessarily belong to the historical context of the story. With this conscious manipulation of time, I try to cast the historical story forward to the modern viewer. Because the viewer experiences a break with the logical course of events, they are encouraged to consciously think about what is to be seen (Verfremdungseffekt).
The figures you will find in my work can be best described as nondescript. The lack of clear or individual features and the neutral facial expressions require active participation of the viewer to color in what is missing at first sight. I try to not judge, but give space to different perspectives on the past. The aim is to tell a story that is as objective as possible. Because it is about realities of a society that no longer exists. A period that has already passed, but which is considered to be connected with the present and thus influences our reality. The viewer is presented with a mirror, it reveals social structures and the viewer realizes that these structures are not immutable. By creating insight, the viewer can contribute little by little to a better and fairer world, only if they want to.
SOME BACKGROUND INFORMATION
The estate of Ewijkshoeve was in the late nineteenth century the ‘country residence’ of the patrician family Witsen. Their son Willem Witsen was a Dutch painter, etcher and photographer associated with the Amsterdam Impressionism movement. Thanks to his generosity, Ewijkshoeve became a gathering place for writers, musicians and painters and formed the backdrop of the Tachtigers movement who proclaimed the principle of l’art pour l’art. Works of art originated here, can now be found in leading museums like the Rijksmuseum or the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam.
INSPIRING ARTWORKS LINKED TO EWIJKSHOEVE
Exactly a century later I grew up on the same estate, which has shaped me to a large extent. The history of this place has always fascinated me. My work is somehow derived from the late nineteenth century’s artworks made on or inspired by Ewijkshoeve. Works by artists like Willem Witsen himself, W.B. Tholen or Piet Meiners who had their studio’s there. Or by their artistic contemporaries who regularly visited this place. The atmosphere of these works can be characterized by melancholic, sober, and often dark scenes.
In my work, I try to translate the atmosphere of that period into contemporary artworks. My color usage, compositions, shapes & structures, techniques, use of materials as well as subject matters are influenced by my renowned examples from the past.