As a teenager at the Grafische School (College for Creative Studies) I learned ‘more than all future art academies put together’. We were literally taught everything. Plus you had to work incredibly hard. For me this was hardly a punishment, I loved it. Subsequently I went to the art academy in Maastricht, specialising in sculpture. In 1978, during my final year at the Academie voor Industriële Vorming in Eindhoven (Academy for Industrial Education), I received my first large assignment.
I continued to make large, abstract sculptures until 2001. After 20 years my enthusiasm started to wane and it was time to set a new course. I did some experimenting with images of legs but quit abruptly in 2002 – a direct result of the sudden death of my 18 year old son. In painting, I found a way to release my immense sorrow. I didn’t have any painting equipment, so I used just one brush to mix all the paint, applying it to the canvas with spatulas. It took me two to three months to develop my own style. Painting provided the platform I needed to go on.
I painted frantically, almost exclusively portraits, until I suddenly hit a dead end in 2012. I simply had no space left in my head. For a while I was convinced my creativity had completely dried up; that I had lost it. Then, early 2016, I found some new space. I am looking outward again; the flow of ideas is never-ending.
I guess you could say I have returned to my old flame: sculpture. In a very different way, but still. My previous works were abstract, architectonic and static. The objects I make today are interactive and dynamic; joyful and colourful like my paintings. For the implementation of my ideas I look for collaboration with IT professionals, technicians and students. The final object does not just belong to me but to all those people who showed an interest in my idea and got on board along the way. It is amazing to work this way and add something to the process.