They are drawn almost away from her creative hands, her surefire and revealing insights into the rich, empty life of the party tigers and the reception addicts, the oyster-lures and champagne bourgeoisie, the immense banter and the unbridled drinkers, the drunken knights and the drinkers, the hot-mouths and the idlers, which she has now portrayed in more than a thousand paintings in all their triviality and vanity. Yet it is not just inflated vendors who populate her colorful canvases. Gerdine puts her figures in their unguarded moments with mild mockery as their vulnerable and insecure self, when they try to escape from a world where status, knowledge, protocols and power keep them trapped. This is lyrical expressionism in its purest form. Looking at the painting by Gerdine Duijsens ,we see ourselves. A smile plays around our lips, a giggle crawls up along the diaphragm. That's why we want her canvases on our walls: Because they tell us something about ourselves. Because they are real.
A career in art
Gerdine began studying, and after a short time, left Utrecht Academy Artibus. She hoped to be able to perfect her drawing, which she had been practicing for years. She’d thought she might learn something about anatomy, or portrait painting. But was a miscalculation. At that time, instructors encouraged their students to paint in an abstract way. That did not appeal to her at all. An assignment calling for students to try "painting space" was too vague for a young Gerdine, then just eighteen. She came to school to learn techniques, to help her to get images that arose in her brain onto her paper.
For someone who aspires a career in art, it might have been 'a little stupid' to stop school so quickly. But to become an artist, well, she was not so involved at that time. It was just her to be able to draw better. An omission, if you want to call it that, which she later made up for at the Academy of Fine Arts in Arendonk, Belgium, because it was no longer denied, after all the talent was already under construction, and it now wanted to ripening. And then it went fast too. Soon Gerdine gave watercolor lessons to interested parties.
Born as an artist
Gerdine Duijsens was born in Utrecht. A career as an artist was initially not planned, but later could not be stopped. When the children went their separate ways, they gave space to something, which she always knew…. All the way back to when she skipped school and ate her sandwiches at the Centraal Museum Utrecht. Gerdine says, "After all, you do not become an artist, you are born an artist. Whether you end up doing something with that talent is entirely up to yourself.”
What others do with their talents sometimes surprises her. Some artists are really missing the track. That there are artists who only make art to provoke and shock; something she regards as an insult to the profession of artist. Sometimes modern art is so confrontational, repulsive and shocking that Gerdine no longer understands it. Of course, this does not apply to art with a story behind it, an explanation why the artist has chosen a particular form.
Beautiful is not a criterion, that is an empty concept. You need to be able to touch art, be interesting, innovate, change your mind. An artist is allowed to show you his world, share his vision of the world with you. In this way she does not understand why some people copy the work of others, sometimes even copy them exactly. Gerdine does not understand that. It is for her a question why those people do not invent it themselves and do not even use their talents for their own fantasies.
The dining scenes, her trademark
Gerdine Duijsens has a very recognizable style, which can be divided into four main forms: food scenes, animals, abstracts and portraits. Her people are bon vivants, a little blasé or ridiculous, arrogant or insecure, happy or bored. Her animals are temperamental, powerful, dynamic and fast, her abstracts are fascinatingly layered and exciting and her portraits are of all times. The dining scenes have become Gerdine's trademark and generate a steadily growing number of enthusiasts, including more and more people from abroad.
And then that laugh tickle comes up again along our diaphragm. It brushes past our temples and weaves through our hair. It pricks our eyes and knocks our throats. We recognize those people on these canvases: they are our family members, they are our friends; they are, quite simply, us. They move us, we have to laugh at them a bit.
We love them and we want them with us. Because they make us happy.