This will display works that are either sold, or not for sale.
Silk hand embroidery on cotton, 7 by 10 cm.
This hand embroidered needlepainting shows a forest stream in the Hague forest, near my old home, in the winter. The water was almost frozen, the winter light and the snow reflecting in it, perfectly still, perfectly controlled. I liked how calm and perfect it all looked, with the perfectly arranged banks, so controlled and perfect and such a contrast with the sea that is only 5 kilometers away from this spot, ignoring that this place is actually under sea level. The Dutch have always had a difficult relationship with the sea, since so much of the country is under sea level and we use technology to keep the sea at bay. We do this so succesfully, we don't really think of the sea as a threat anymore. So, this painting is a bit ironic, displaying the perfect control of an artificial forest stream so close to the sea.
This work has been exhibited at Museum de Fundatie in Zwolle, the Netherlands.
Silk hand embroidery on cotton, 10 by 10 cm.
Last March, I went to China as an artist in residence at QingYun International Art Centre. It was my first time to Asia, and once could argue there are easier places to start than China, but I loved it there. The chaos, the unpredictability, just..China. You can't really explain it to anyone who hasn't been there, and if you have been there, I don't have to explain it. You either love it or you want to go home immediately, and I loved it. What drew me to China was that thread painting with silk threads-needlepainting-comes from there, and visiting Suzhou(where the masters of this technique live)and meeting embroiderers, and seeing needlepainting other than my own for the first time was truly amazing. But what fascinated me when I was actually there was the unpredictability and the amazing chaos of it all, nothing ever happens quite as you think it will happen and every time you think 'okay, I got this', something weird happens and you're thrown off guard again-an experience I loved. Part of this is the language, part of it is the culture difference, but it seemed to be that the people living there were experiencing some of this as well. China has been going through so many changes in such recent history, it seemed to me everyone is just trying to make the best of it and going with the flow, changing at any moment and against all odds having a pretty good time doing it. This painting, based off a picture I took the first weekend the cherry blossoms were starting to bloom, represents that-the beauty and the steadily forming of something that's worth to see amidst chaos and vague surroundings. Just do your thing, and apparently pretty cool stuff happens.
Silk hand embroidery on cotton, 16 by 12 cm.
One more work inspired by my time in China. QingYun International Art Centre is located just outside of the big city of Beijing, in a more rural area. 'Rural' in Beijing doesn't quite mean what it means in the rest of the world though, and of course the smog is hard to escape no matter how rural the life is. On bad days, there seemed to be an orange-y filter over the world, creating a glow over everything you see that is quite beautiful and almost fairylike in a way, transforming the flats and traditional style bridges, bare trees and still pond into a cohesive world that isn't there when the sky is clear. It's like there is a filter over the world that is strangely attractive, until you realise what exactly it is. I wanted to show it just as how it was that day, simply because at that moment, the light falling through the smog and the colors were beautiful.
Silk hand embroidery on cotton, 7 by 5 cm. This embroidery was inspired by my visit to Finland last winter, it was -22 but my friend and I went outside anyway, with lots of clothes and a bottle of vodka to keep us warm, and we were about to leave the forest when the last light of the day started to come through the trees and made the cold blue come alive with this fiery light. I was expecting it to be quiet outside, it being -22 and all, but there were actually a lot of people in the forest. I've returned to this forest in September when the weather was beautiful, the sky was bright blue and everything was green, but there were not nearly as many people as there were when it was nestled in a deep blanket of snow. You could argue that Fins are cold proof or used to it, but I think it has to do with the light; when there is so little light around, you value and treasure every moment of light you can get, and that means going outside in the beautiful nature, even when your nose hair is freezing. I made this painting to celebrate those last moments of disappearing light, before the night starts again.
'Truus', a hand embroidered portrait of a lady I met at a fries food truck in the tiny village of Herbeumont, Belgium, is the first time I've embroidered a portrait. I wanted to make a portrait of a very normal, ordinary person, someone just like you and me. Truus is just a lady, living her life, getting her fries from the truck on Wednesday, loving her family and enjoying her summer vacation in Herbeumont. Even her name is a very common Dutch name, Truus. There are so many people like Truus all over the world, and there is something beautiful in that, I find, something I wanted to remind myself of too by creating a colourful, detailed portrait of a very normal person.
This is a handembroidery needlepainting I made during my artist residency in Beijing and now in the collection of QingYun International Art Centre. It shows the sky over Beijing on three randomly picked days, with the levels of pollution of that day. My landscape paintings often are about the relationship between people and their surroundings, and before I went to China I never really thought about the air and the sky; back home, the air just is, the sky just is.
In Beijing, you can get an app on your phone that tells you the level of pollution and you decide if you’re going to go outside for a run or not depending on the pollution and it feels very normal very quickly, it just becomes part of daily life. It sounds really bad, and it is pretty bad, but it became normal very quickly and it surprised me how quickly I didn’t even think about it anymore. I thought it was fascinating, so most of my paintings from there revolve around the air.
A small, 5x5 cm needlepainting, showing the quiet winter in the Hague, the Netherlands, created for an exhibition of small, 5 by 5 cm works. I love creating small works, their portability appeals to me as someone who's always on the move and doesn't like to carry heavy things, but I also love them from a conceptual point of view; you can only really look at them one at the time and so a small work creates a very private moment between it and you, the viewer. With this work, I wanted to take a moment and transport the viewer to this quiet morning in the snow.
This is Poppedijn, a collaboration between me and Frederieke Westerveld from Freakstyle BJD. Poppedijn is a 32 cm doll and a genderless creature, made out of resin and strung with elastic. The outfits are all designed and hand made and embroidered by me. The concept behind this Poppedijn is that her dress represents a world she created of her own, with a cycle of life and death. Poppedijn lies in the middle of that world, observing and neutral.
This white Poppedijn has a hand knitted lace outfit. Her concept was the beginning of spring, the first, shy green flowers bursting through the still frozen ground.
Poppedijn as a concept is a genderless doll, with this doll we wanted to explore their androgyny, neither male, nor female, Poppedijn's name literally means 'doll that belongs to you' and so they morph into whatever we or their owner needs them to be. Poppedijn is to me, a gender utopia.
All three Poppedijns together. They are all hand cast in resin by Frederieke, photography by me. They are actually for sale, so if you are interested, please contact me.
Sold pendant necklace, showing the Hague Forest in summer.
Sold pin brooche, showing the little village of St.Armand-en-Puisaye in France in the summer.