Maayke Schuitema and Anouk van Tetering: Inspired by Icons
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all exhibitions were cancelled. Suddenly there was time. So two artist friends came up with a project Inspired by Icons during the lockdown. For the first time, Maayke Schuitema and Anouk van Tetering merge their expertise into unique, life-sized works as an ode to iconic people form history.
The differences between the artist friends are great in appearance, character and working method, but in the Inspired by Icons project they complement each other perfectly. One tells stories through (self-) portraits, often large female nudes that are created by making huge linocuts and printing them by hand on special Kozo paper. With black graphic lines and the addition of acrylic paint and pencil, Maayke Schuitema brings naked women to life in graceful, expressive postures. Not as sex objects, but as powerful, sensual and outspoken individuals.
The other tells stories by photographing small items that are usually no larger than ten centimeters, items that Anouk Tetering has collected over the years and that she does extensive research on. Her Chanel Art Collection now consists of about 300 used, empty, forgotten, antique perfume bottles with scents that no longer exist, that are damaged or have frayed or stained labels, but also Chanel bags and other accessories with hidden stories. She releases those forgotten, unnoticed items from their anonymous existence in drawers or cupboards where they have spent decades in the dark. She magnifies them by zooming in with her technical camera and puts them in the spotlight as aesthetic art objects.
Together the artists tell documentary-like stories about well-known icons from history that inspire them. They record this in life-size works of art, printed on the most beautiful paper and encased in handmade frames. At Rademakers Gallery they celebrate the centenary of the most iconic perfume in the world: Chanel N°5, which was launched on May 5, 1921 in Paris. Anouk photographed one such bottle from her collection, accentuated with 24-carat gold leaf, in pin-sharp detail. Maayke takes the framed image as a canvas and transforms it into a kind of poster art: with paint, silver and white pencil on black paper she draws a beautiful lifelike sensual Marilyn Monroe behind the bottle of Chanel N°5. She also captures Gabrielle Bonheur 'Coco' Chanel (1883-1971), who died exactly fifty years ago, in gray pencil, with her eternal cigarette and her pearls, half hidden behind the huge bottle of Coco Chanel eau de toilette.
All works feature handwritten quotes, sayings and other texts, complemented by the original vintage item such as the Chanel bottle, a Blackwing Japanese graphite pencil used by Walt Disney, and a valuable collector's item: a ticket from 'Uprising', the latest Bob Marley tour before he died.