Friday, December 14, 2012

Opening Night & Big Thanks

Last week, after 4 movies in a row, little sleep, a bit of reading and some gazing at the rough black and white patchwork of Canada underneath, I left the plane to set foot on ground in Seattle once more. It was good to be back, even though my visit was brief. The weather showed mostly it's gloomy side with grey skies and a cold drizzle but that didn't stop me from hiking down to my favorite shops like Red Light clothing, Schmancy and the art suppliers Dick Blick and Utrecht.
But the main reason to be there was the opening night of my sixth (shared) solo exhibition at Roq la Rue gallery, of course! It was much fun. Besides meeting new people I enjoyed seeing colleagues and art collectors. I'd like to give a big thanks to all who showed interest -both in person and through other channels-, to John and Jenny, to Ryan for being a great art ally and to Roq's captain Kirsten Anderson for doing yet another fab job. Cheers, all!

Images of all the works can be found here, and see more pictures of the opening here.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Pigeons for Ospreys

Next week I'll briefly swap pigeons for ospreys, the Westerkerk for the Space Needle and a rainy flat city for a rainy hilly one. See you later Amsterdam, howdy-do Seattle!

I'm looking forward to show my new work. The serie for my exhibition 'Let the Devil Wear Black' is inspired by a range of sources from Japanese ghost stories to the act of harvesting and the beauty of berries and fruit, all characteristically accompanied by animals and other characters.

The new serie of paintings will go with the loot of extraordinary frames I collected for this exhibition. Hand carved, home crafted and full of personality and uniqueness. Tramp art, antique Dutch, Black Forest woodcarving or World War 2 memorabilia, these frames have a (hi)story of their own. (And as the completion of my paintings another chapter is added to their tale).

Hope to see you December the 7th at Roq la Rue Gallery.

Opening night from 6-9 pm, 2312 2nd Avenue, Seattle, WA. (206) 374 8977 All work for the exhibition will be online on the gallery's website after the opening. For more information please contact Kirsten Anderson at Roq la Rue Gallery. 

Above; Sneak peek of 'Marinero', mixed media on panel in antique tramp art frame ©2012 
Frame size; 8.7x9.4" (22x24cm)

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Getting Ready

Meet my dad. Every now and then he helps me out framing. Yesterday he was so kind to lend me a hand with the preps for the upcoming exhibition. Here he is framing some of my work at the table in the salt mines (also known as my living room). Thanks a million, dad!

Below; Noodles. And some of the framed works, ready to be packed and shipped.  

Thursday, November 15, 2012


On December 6, 2012, the Atomica Gallery will present itself to the world in a three week pop up art overture in London, UK. To warm up for the fireworks, check out their tasteful website and save the date to not miss the work of Chris Conn, Niagara Detroit, and many others (including a serie of my (framed) giclée prints).

Atomica Gallery, 68 Sclater street, London, Shoreditch E1 6HR
Open; Mon-Sat 11-7 pm, Thur 11-8 pm, Sun 11-6 pm

Update; check out some opening night pictures here!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Fortuna for Free

From me to you! Valid from November 13, 2012, the next 20 people who order one or more giclée print(s) from my website will receive this limited mini print 'Fortuna' for free. Click image for close up.

- Size 4.7 x 6.6 inches, 12 x 17 cm
- One print per order
- Even though it's not shown on this image, all prints are signed an numbered
- Once the edition is gone the offer will be removed from my website and this post will be updated*


Saturday, November 10, 2012

Let the Devil Wear Black

The count down has started; in a few weeks my next shared exhibition 'Let the Devil Wear Black' will open at Roq la Rue Gallery in Seattle. The talented Ryan Heshka will be my partner in exhibition. I hope you'll be able to drop by on the opening night Friday December 7, 2012, to see the work in person and say hi!

Info: Roq la Rue Gallery, 2312 2nd Avenue, 98121 WA, Seattle, USA (206) 374-8977

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Respect For Squirrels & New Cool Tool

Today I started repairing a hand made Tramp Art frame. This flea market find -15 euro's, a bargain- has real pine cone embellishments but not every cone survived the ravages of time. Splitting the replacement cones in half was less easy than I thought. The cone's core was too tough for my hand saw so I had to cut my way through it with pliers. After a few minutes cone scales were everywhere and stuck everywhere because of their gluey resin. Where's a squirrel when you need one?

The construction of the frame is a bit weak and I'll have to brace the backside with corner brackets. The wood of the frame -layers of pieces of cigar boxes- is delicate so I will need to pre-drill the screw holes to avoid it from splitting. I scored these two key like hand drills (about €2,50 each, another bargain). They are perfect for the task and I love their shape and simplicity.

Monday, October 8, 2012


Bruges. Or Brugge, in Dutch. Or the 'Venice of the North', as the canal-based place in neighbouring Belgium is nicknamed. The beauty of this medieval city is well-known (Bruges is on the UNESCO world heritage list) and therefore attracts many visitors. That popularity has a downside but if you pay no mind to the (other) camera carrying folk -either clustered in groups, canal boots or horse cab-, ignore the pop music played through street speakers and see the humour of one chocolate and needle lace shop after another, it's a town certainly worth a visit. Last weekend I was in Bruges and I didn't give the town's highlights the cold shoulder but my main goal was to go to the Groeningemuseum.

The collection of the museum is small but of high quality. Many Flemish Primitive paintings are presented there, in a very visitor friendly way. The rooms have the intimacy of a gallery and sometimes the only barrier between the viewer and the artwork is a glass plate that secures the painting. Almost all works can be approached closely and the tiniest details can be discovered and studied. Unfortunately Hieronymus Bosch's 'The last judgement' was on loan but I could marvel -for example- at the details of the works of Jan van Eyck, or the softness that Adriaen Isenbrant managed to get into his portraits. The museum also has examples of Belgian symbolism, modernism and post war art but I was mostly impressed by the 15th and 16th century work. Here are some photo's;

First photo; Needle lace. You could also buy lace wine bottle outfits to pimp up your Bordeaux with either a suit & tie, dress & bonnet or a neutral apron.

The large oil painting 'The virgin and child with canon Van Der Paerle' by Jan van Eyck, ' (1434-36), is astonishingly beautiful. Its colours and details are so rich and truly seem to pop from the panel. The depth of the textures in clothing, rugs, skin and metal is very tangible. What a painting!

I think Pieter Pourbus had fun painting his version of the 'Last judgement', (1551). The 'heavenly', upper half of the painting is devote and pretty straight forward but the lower part of the piece, where Pourbus captures the demons and the suffering of the souls who are bound for hell or purgatory, is very expressive and playful. Another remarkable thing, when inspecting the work closely you could clearly see the sketch lines underneath the top layer of paint, which could not be seen when standing two steps back. How interesting that he decided to let those lines be.

Detail of the Adriaen Isenbrant triptych, first half 16th century.

(Part of a) triptych by unknown artist. Beautiful colour combination, lovely hand detail. 

On a five minute walk from the Groeningemuseum lies the the St. Salvator's Cathedral, an impressive church that houses a collection of art as well.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Two Faced Beauty

A while back I scored two home crafted frames; one hand carved German style frame and one 'Tramp Art' frame. They are in a good shape considering their age and the backside reveals some of that history. The first one has a scrap of old newspaper attached to the back ('Hamburg, March 18 1902') and the Tramp Art frame is build from carved layers of wood from old cigar boxes. You can tell a lot about the origin and age of a frame if you inspect the backside, and in these cases it's literal.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

I Went Away And Got Back Again

Just before autumn kicked in I went on a city trip to Milan, Italy, traveling through Germany and Switzerland. After only a few days of Italian dust I went back to the Dutch mud again -it was a short trip, but sweet. Above and below some snapshots; handsome metal signs in Germany, desolate camp site bathrooms, the magnificent skinless sculpture of the apostle St Bartholomew, the Milan cathedral the 'Duomo di Milano', tasty espresso's, another magnificent sculpture (back view), 'rubbing the calve and knee' of the Duomo door for good fortune, traveling over the Swiss Furka pass and Grimsel pass.

 ...And now back to work.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

La Mort at Long Gone John's

The 'La Mort en Cadence' piece, the painting on panel I made for the Death & the Maiden exhibition, found a new owner in collector/entrepreneur Long Gone John. He recently send me a photo of the customized wooden easel he created for the piece, set in its new surrounding. ...And what a surrounding it is! And this is just a snippet of the collectable-extravaganza that is John's house. See some more here.

By the way, Long Gone John is the producer of the upcoming Timid Cabbage book. Cool, ey? (Photo ©2012, Long Gone John)

Monday, August 13, 2012

Summer Update

No time for the Hokey Pokey and cocktails in the sun for me yet, hard work it is these summer months. Here's a quick update;

For example the Timid Cabbage book I'm working on. The serie drawings that where based on the poem by Charles Krafft, will be bundled in a 9 x 11 inch book. I made 11 additional drawings for the publication, of which you can see two examples below. At the moment designer Mark Cox and me are working on the last bits of the book. Very exciting! Exact presentation dates will follow.
Photo above; working on the additional drawings (shot from the studio where I work once a week).

Noodles assisting me with the Cabbage book check list.

I'm also busy painting. Here's a sneak peek of a small piece for my upcoming (shared) solo exhibition in December. It's an acrylic and colour pencil mix on panel.

Meanwhile, the rainy days made way for drier, more summer-worthy weather. There was some rain damage to the flowers in my garden but a few managed to resist the monsoon. (I forgot the name of the yellow one. It looks like a mix of a tulip and an orchid. I'm quite fond of its 'leopard print'. And when it sheds a flower, a new one appears on the stem, four to five times in a row).

And these glass gems are Bisazza mosaic stones, used for a very interesting project, of which I can't share much about now, but will somewhere in the upcoming months on this blog.

Enjoy the summer, everybody!

Monday, June 11, 2012

New Limited Edition Print 'La Mort en Cadence' Details

‘The cadens of death’, my interpretation of the Danse Macabre allegory. A seemingly dreamlike scene of a stoat, surrouned by various flora in decay’. The background of this print is white.

Size: 11 x 11.2" / 28 x 28.5 cm. Print run: 20 pieces, limited edition. Available at the Femtasia Shop (These images are posted to give an idea of the detail of the giclée prints available on my website).

Sunday, June 10, 2012

New Portrait

A few months back, photographer Lukas Göbel dropped by to shoot my portrait to go with an interview in Surface magazine. I very much like this shot, taken in my back yard. Check out more of Lukas' impressive (portrait) work at his website.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Part Terrier

I spotted this doggie in Haarlem, last weekend. If I'd ever own a dog I hope it looks something like this one. Photo's nor words could proper capture it's attractiveness, you should have been there. Than you too would have remarked it's peculiar shape and short legs, it's robotic walk that resembled an automatic toy, it's 'like I care' grumpy glance and it's stubbornness to be fondled by strangers.
'She's part terrier!', the owner proudly shared, as the dog stared the other way, ignoring me (and the fact that most terrier types are curious and friendly). I loved it, as I have a weakness for all animals with an odd shape and character, and totally unnecessary told the dog 'You're cute!', to which the owner said to his pet 'There, now you see for yourself'.
(Photo: ©Leendert -thanks!)

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Fever, Part 2

For some years now I’m using IWeb software for my website. Although it has advantages there are some things that go beyond my website building skills.
I have learned from visitors and from my own experience that my website can have an unstable appearance. In certain browsers and on certain computers it looks fine but in some occasions the font changes, switches position or even appears in a larger size which makes texts unreadable. Highly frustrating for both myself and you as a visitor.

I’m working on finding more suitable software. If my current website is unreadable, please try it in another browser and see if that helps. Until that time, thanks for your patience.

*Update: I've switched all texts from type to images. Not perfect, but it helps.

June News

Although outside it feels nothing like June In Holland supposed to be, with temperatures that equal last years Christmas, here's some sunny news for you to enjoy;

'Inside the Sketchbook' is a new serie on the Hi Fructose website. A peek inside the sketchbook of various artists. Here's mine. Picture above; one of my sketchbook pages.

'Debut' is a Korean publication on illustration and art and holds a plethora of pictures with accompanying interviews. My work is sandwiched between the art of Fred Stonehouse, Mark Whalen and many others (most of them unknown by me). Hard to say something about the written part of the book since it's in Korean, but overall it looks and feels professional and the work is an eclectic mix and unites in it's surreal content. Pleased to be part of it. More info here.

Interview; Here's a nice chat with the folks of the 'Last Junkies on Earth' blog, last month. (Oh, and did you know Bjoern and Linda of LJoE have a cool band with the cool name Stuntcat?)

This is the announcement on Hi Fructose of the upcoming group exhibition at Roq la Rue gallery, opening on June 8, 2012. The theme of the show is 'Death and the Maiden',  an art motif that originates from the late-medievel Danse Macabre allegory, which will be interpreted by a variety of contemporary artists.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

La Mort en Cadence Sneak Peek

Here's a sneak peek detail of one of my new works called 'La Mort en Cadence'. This panel with acrylics and colour pencil was made for the upcoming group exhibition 'Death and the Maiden' at Roq la Rue Gallery, this June. (Full image and more details will be posted shortly before the exhibition opening, June 8, 2012).

Wednesday, April 25, 2012


Every now and then I'm struck by iWeb fever and I change what I feel needs a makeover or improvement on my website. (It's both a blessing and a curse to have access to the lay out). Recently I changed the header into a more playful one with 'branch' typography, added links to this blog of details of all my giclée prints, created a order help page for those who need help ordering and cleaned up and streamlined where possible. Have a look!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Pictoplasma Berlin 2012

Last week I went to Berlin. I was invited to speak at the Pictoplasma festival, the conference on character design and art. My work is perhaps not the first thing that pops into mind when you think about this happening but the presence of characters and inanimates in my work can't be denied. So I agreed to join in and wrote a talk for 40 minutes, as requested. It was extensively time consuming to put together. But the nice side effect was that it also forced me to take a step back and look at my work with other eyes. The process of a working life can elapse fluently and writing the lecture made me realize that it's useful to reflect. It helped to put my work in perspective. At the same time, by setting out my creative past my goals for the future got refreshed again.

The talk itself went well. I was happy to see that, despite of my head being in a snotty cold cloud, it all went as rehearsed and the response was positive.

The days in Berlin were fun. The city is welcoming and spacious, with many wallet friendly restaurants and creative area's. I know of some colleagues who moved to Berlin because of the affordable housing and studio spaces. It's not all that hard to envision doing so. (Personally, the cold German winters frighten me off).
At Pictoplasma I've met colleagues I only knew from their work (Nathan Jurevicius, Faiyaz Jafri) and also enjoyed hanging with fellow creative Dutchies (Raymond Lemstra, Mark Verhaagen, Sauerkids Taco and Mark and Maaike Hartjes. Btw, Maaike has posted a great drawn Pictoplasma report on her blog (multiple episodes, in Dutch). Here are some of my Berlin snapshots;

Above; Walking around Mitte with Raymond - The conference area was situated at Alexanderplatz and the Babylon movie theatre - When out, the weather was mostly rain free but the water cold air managed to pierce through my jacket.

Berlin is a fine place for those who like old moped/motor models and flea markets - Mauerpark market's top item; this strangely attractive tiger painting. I didn't buy it though. I got these two tiny toys in stead. Their faces were hand painted and the plastic was of a beautiful mixed kind. One is a wobbly toy and the other holds a miniature whirligig in it's abdomen (vintage promotional give-away's, perhaps?).

Visiting the Bee Kingdom's glassblowing demo. Damn, what a craft! Heated glass is such a weird taffy like material. They explained that even with years of experience a glass artist can't avoid losing a work in the process every now and then - The Sauerkids are live painting, Faiyaz is watching - Raymond giving his lecture at the Babylon theatre.

Personal preparation exercise; getting in touch with the base of the Babylon. Last pic's; talking the talk.