History, Herstory, my story.
The Milkmaid, self-portrait, was made in 1993 from autobiographical motifs. It is a key work in my work. A key work because it was the beginning of a whole series of paintings made with ‘kitchen tools’, such as the whipped cream syringe, a butter knife, but also sewn cups, Brabants coloured squares on canvas. The work Melkmeisje, schip vaart voorbij is about the desire for something completely different and unknown.
Girls in my neighbourhood
In 2003 I showed a series of half digital, half painted works. I saw the link of the women I saw in paintings by Dutch masters to the girls from Morocco and Turkey I saw daily at Albert Heijn and in my neighbourhood. Sometimes it seemed as if I saw them stepping out of the painting. In 2004, when Theo van Gogh was killed no more than 200 m from my house, I picked up the Milkmaid series again and continued to explore the project. Besides the Milkmaid, 3 other series have been added: The girl with the pearl earring, Van Gogh (including potato eaters), Traditionals as Zeeuws Meisje, Droste vrouw, Boterbabbelaars.
Today I regularly see paintings or images that are used to nuance or focus the discussion about women with headscarves. At the moment there is a poster hanging in the city with a woman with tablecloth on her head for an exhibition in the Amsterdam Historical Museum………
I remember that about 8 years ago a house painter came to my studio, clearly of Moroccan descent. He reacted strongly and was surprised by the headscarves that hung in my studio at the time…
At such a moment art is a miracle….!