Time and time again strange words come of the television. Too painful to remember literally their their scope is; art is for lunatics and at best a hobby. Of no importance. Something marginal. No need to take seriously. Then, when we have a commemoration of something important we gather around a monument… A work of art! To center very important moments we human beings apparently need, literally, a piece of art. When we marry we give our beloved a ring. Things of beauty for important moments, our life is stacked with it. A city is not a good place to be without beauty, without theatre, without a music stage. Life without art is possible but, ouch, without joy. Hurray for art! Hurray for living life fully!
Today I was taken by surprise by someone that bought a sculpture I made, 8 years ago...She is still enjoying it. Such a lovely message! Thank you for the compliment singer and musician Ineke van Doorn!
I am tidying up my studio. Going through bags of clay, half way dried out with half finished sculptures in between. Then I find a just started portrait of my daughter. It has been there for years, it is my toddler daughter. In the blink of an eye I remember how she felt, the softness of her skin, her remarks, how much I love her and even though the portrait isn’t finished, I fire it. I just found a treasure!
In the last moments of 2019 I was chosen to be teacher of the year from the 70 teachers of Cultuurhuis Wherelant. I was invited on the couch with José, our president. Wow!
She named all different classes I have been teaching through the years (very many) and the number of years I have been teaching (my son was no where near, and he is 16 now). My international adventures were also mentioned.
My secret in teaching is that you, the student, are always the boss of your work, I will search along with you for Your Best Sculpture.
I can tell you what works in a sculpture, about the skin, the composition, about what is boring and what invites the eye and you are free to listen. I am not interested in creating a lot of Saskia’s, I like to be Saskia myself as it is. And we are free. When you sculpt you can do anything. You’re free to draw on your work, or paint, to chop, saw, stick things on, whatever you like. This creates space, and quite funny, not only in the works you make, also in other parts of your life. Art is just great!
I finally wanted to make the Gate to Here and Now. All material for this sculpture was already in my studio, I'm quite a hoarder and have many ideas, so my studio is full of 'stuff'. 'A mess', people without many ideas might call it. The rod I had around I could bend and form into a gate and a space. When one passes the gate one enters the Here and Now. The line is quite thin and golden, the golden lining of your world. Your perception for sure. The way it has been constructed, quite sloppy, of material I had laying around, makes me happy. Everything to get into the Here and Now was already here. You can see it at Impulse and, magnificent detail, it is in chains there! Very important this Gate to Here and Now is not to be stolen. (It is very easy to take apart, it has to fit in my car, but this will forever remain our secret.) More of this? https://lnkd.in/dVK5hB3
On a certain day I was asked to restore a sculpture, a portrait of a little boy, Valentin, made by a French sculptor in 18hundred something. A lovely statue to behold. So I fixed it in a way that was strong and invisible and the little boy captured my heart, so I copied the sculpture. Copying is a way of learning, and I learned very much in the process. But I did want to make it my own sculpture as well, and contemporain. So I struggled. I used black firing clay, covered it in white, added underglaze, fired it, still was not happy. As I was in the process of painting it with acrylic paint Paris and the rest of Europe were shaken by the attack on Charlie Hebdo. This made me add an extra layer to the sculpture and gave it its name. You can come to see it in Impuls in Wageningen, and a lot of other works as well.
Last weekend I was in London to put together a place of memory. Someone I love had lost the love of his life and in the United Kingdom, if you have permission of the landowner, you may put a grave on the land. I was asked to make a small cellar and the urn to be placed into this. I made different designs and made the urn chosen. The small cellar is made of Belgian Bluestone, like a puzzle fitting together so once placed, with the earth pushing from the sides, steady and remaining the right form. Over it a slab of the stone that forms the terrace nearby is placed. It was an important moment, placing the urn and closing the cellar. I was so honored I could make this for them. It gave me the chance to put my love for the two of them in.
Last weekend I was in Florence with my work...On the Piazza della SS Annunziata, a place that breathes sculpture. Over my head were the ceramic infants by Della Robbia. I sold works to American collectors and Italian colleagues, ate with ceramists from all over Europe and and enjoyed just being there, what an inspiring adventure!
Last night composer Theo Loevendie turned 88. He is not impressed by this, last year he published his memoires and he still plays and writes new works. A few years ago he couldn't play his saxophone any longer due to eye problems, so he took up the piano... He is an inspiring guy! In 2014 I made his portrait, tiny but definitely him and in honor of his birthday the portrait is in a little book with all the portraits of Theo made through the years.
Last week the big sister of this little guy went to Izmir, Turkey, where she will be listening to what the child psychiatrist and his clients are telling each other...She is to be put up in his office. #psychiatrist #listening #art #sculpture #mask #raku #Izmir #Turkey #portrait #upcycled #frame #ceramic
Last week work has found homes in the United States, Portugal, Denmark and the portrait of Lebanese singer Rima Khcheich left for Beirut, Lebanon. I am really happy my work finds its way around the world.
My dear bear has found a home. Until now you had the chance to download his image and I do hope you took it (or take it asap at free)! You can still see it for a while in Herberg den Rooden Leeuw in Amerongen. Bye, bye, sweet guy.
April 14, 2018
Showing a work is always nice. My work is made to evoke new thoughts or memories or feelings. Like when you walk in a forest you gen get into depths of your cranium that are a little dusty and filled with cobwebs.. Beautiful long lost images might linger there, waiting to be ushered awake. New cross-links might be formed that might cast their light on old unsolved matters. This is what my sculptures do for me when they are formed in my hands and they might do just the same for people watching them. In Amerongen you can see some of my works in a restaurant, herberg Den Rooden Leeuw. The host makes you a lovely dinner, served in a beautiful room. To make your time even better they take care of good art hanging on the walls and in other spots. You'll find my work in places you might have art at home. On a shelf, in a cupboard, where you can also find some glasses. Next to the place the bread is cut. I like this a lot. Art is part of life, of a household, just like coats and shoes. Whenever you find a moment you can go on a journey with the work.
Recently I made four skull shaped ocarina's. An ocarina is a clay flute. Clay flutes have been made for millennia and originate (as far as I know) from South America. They were made in all different kinds of forms and shapes and they trigger my imagination immensely. One of these four (the third from the left side) is in use by my dear husband Joost Lijbaart in his music, two others are for sale on this site. I hope you can enjoy them as I do.
The little ant eater found a home in Iceland!
An enormus building trailer arrives at the campus center parkinglot on thursday. The guys that bring it over don't understand. They had it over there and now they want it over here...
We've been collecting all we need for the exhibition for a couple of days. All portraits, interviews, hooks, bits, the selfies that will be presented as cubes. Mirrors, chairs, tape. We've taken all this to the trailer and we've been marveling about the the amount of building-site energy this place has. Images of guys with construction specifications, floor plans and cracks in alternative places float by.
After some puzzeling and figuring we contrive a plan for the exhibition. All portraits, paintings as well as the sculptured masks get a provisory spot. The painted portriats are a little bigger, less in number and colorful are leading for now. We hang them first. Then all the sculpted portraits find their right spot (when making an exhibition you get works to reinforce one another). Underneath we level the texts.
Now the portraits have taken over, they're in charge. Great! The guys that fix the electricity for this pop up gallery have a lot of fun during their private preview of the exhibition. Yes, they'll come and yes, they'll bring friends!
Opening Monday 23rd of april, 4.30 until 6.30. If your in the opportunity please come!
Tomorrow and sunday you can visit my studio. Between 11 am and 6 pm you can see my workingspace and a lot of work, old and new. At some moment I will be doing two rakufirings, three on sunday. The address is Zuiderijdijk 36 f, it is the shack paralel to the road. There are a lot of other workshops open as well this weekend. Have fun!
Right now I am making a little book about being a sculptor. Elve, my daughter, made an assignment that will be the text. I added a lot of works and a tiny text of my own and this will be a book for children and adults that are interested in art. With it I thought up a game. You can find the game here already.
For two or more players
You both choose one piece of art that you like and one that you don’t like. You can pick out something from this book or whatever artwork happens to be around. Then taking turns you tell each other your opinion of the artwork and why you choose this one. You start with the one you did not like. Is it made in a nice way? Does it make you angry or sad, happy or content? Can you laugh about it or does it make you sing? Does it have pretty colours? Are you able to tell the technique? Do you consider it impressive or really easy? And does that matter? Do the two of you always have the same opinion? Or do you sometimes like a sculpture the other person dislikes? Do you know why? Is that bad? Enjoy!
P.S. You will see it is possible to disagree and it doesn’t matter! It could also bring you new ideas. Isn’t that fun?