Past and present

I was born in 1973 and grew up in the countryside of Friesland (Northern province of the Netherlands), where my parents still own a farm. Nowadays I enjoy living in the small village of Hoevelaken, with my husband and two dogs.

Paintings

I regularly visit my parents, which brings back good memories of my childhood. They taught me the love and respect for animals and old materials. I think my paintings are a result of fond memories from these times also.

Study

In the early 90’s I started the study of ‘Presentation’ (window-dressing, decoration and stand design) at the creative art school ‘Cibap’ in the city of Zwolle, where I received my diploma. After that I spent the next 1 1/2 year following a course on ‘Painting and Illustration’ at the ‘School of Arts Minerva’ in the city of Groningen.

When I completed my study I came to live in the city of Amersfoort, where I earned my living in the catering industry. During this time I also painted (wall) decorations on commission for individuals and businesses. After a few years of painting for others, I began to develop my own style more strongly and set it on canvas.

Wood

A short time later, I found parts of a fence, I collected the old wooden boards and admired the beautiful patterns. I began to paint on these with acrylic, and discovered that using old wood as the background for my paintings was a much better source of inspiration. Wood is versatile and different, it offers continually new possibilities.

The difference between canvas and wood is that with wood, the background is a fundamental ingredient of the painting. To create optimum harmony, I try to bring the roughness and details, like nail holes, knots and old paint, together with the figuratively painted animals. The wood I use can even influence my style. Every piece of wood demands an individual approach as it contributes to the whole image.

Animals

After discovering old wood as the background, I found the choice of subject wasn’t that difficult. Using my intuition, I arrange the animals to fit the grains of the wood. Working together these elements form the perfect scenery of my rural paintings.

Often I let the choice of animal depend on what kind of wood I have in hand. In my work I give the animals, mostly unintentionally, some human qualities. For example, sometimes it seems they look curious and other times a little bit shy.

Charity

In respect of my big inspiration source, I become a regular supporter of the World Animal Protection and also give a part of the proceeds of my sold paintings to this organization. They help to work towards a world where animal welfare matters and cruelty ends. Want to know more, look at: www.worldanimalprotection.org.uk

And for each of the sold ‘donkey-paintings’, a percentage goes to the Dutch ‘Stichting Opvang Ezels’ (S.O.E.). This foundation profites shelter for donkey’s which, for different reasons, need another home. Do you want to know more about this foundation, look at the Dutch website: www.ezelopvang.nl

Gallery

In 2006 I came in contact with Wiebke v.d. Scheer, owner of the modern figurative art gallery ‘Artacasa’ in Amsterdam. Since this time my work is permanently exhibited in her gallery. Take a look at www.artacasa.nl

On commission

I also paint on commission. So don’t hesitate to contact me if you want to know more.