Artist in Residence n.09

This was slightly different edition for us as we invited an illustrator but also a blogger to our Vaudeville Theatre. Maartje spent the day drawing away while Margot captured some beautiful details.


Welcome to The Loft, please introduce yourself.
My name is Maartje van den Noort.  I work and live in Amsterdam Since 2010, before that I studied Fine Arts in Rotterdam. I find the inspiration for my drawings, paintings and products in the flora (and fauna) that surround me.


What materials do you usually work with and what did you bring today?
I very often work with a Staedler pigment liners for my drawings. The plain and definite lines of the pen force me tot dare. Making mistakes help me to get a little rough edge and a sense of coincidental beauty. Next to that I use watercolour, acrylic- and oil-based paint on linen canvas. Somehow I find myself working with loads of layers when I paint. First I build up a background with very watery paint and then at some point I start to ‘draw’ with the brush. For me it works best to see a painting the same as a drawing. And I approach both as a sketch. Today I brought a stack of lovely thick off-white watercolour-paper and a variety of brushes together with my little box of aquarel-paint.


Which artist or designer is a source of inspiration for you?
Ooh, there are many… But amongst those you could say that the work of Marc Mulders, Marlene Dumas, Lourdes Sanches, Henk Helmantel, Herman de Vries, Anne ten Donkelaar, Saskia de Valk, and Piet Warffemius definitely belong to the core-inspirators at this moment. And the music of The Innocence Mission. They never fail me with their fragile and autumn-like sound.


If you could invent a name for an art movement you belong to, what would it be?
Haha, ehm.. gosh…maybe something like figurative-abstract nature-lovers ? but that sounds extremely corny and my knowledge of art-movements is too small to find a right name. I think this might be a good task for the viewer.


What kind of work do you usually make and how was it different today?
Usually I make drawings in black and white and the paintings I make are very layered, today I forced myself to only use watercolour / aquarelpaint and this turned out to be quite a challenge, because it quickly becomes very definite. And in my autonomous work I usualIy tend to look for less defined images, maybe like a leaf that has tarnished a bit, you can still see the beauty in it but it starts showing it’s decay and with that it’s rawer feel.
Watercolour (in my handwriting) soon becomes too flat, too illustrative… But afterwards I am actually quite content with part of the outcome of this one day A.I.R.


What will you tell your friends about The Loft?
I will tell my friends that If they can afford it, they should definitely try to spend a night there. And next to that I’d tell them about the beautiful location and the abundant light that overflows the space. The glasshouse-feel to it and the lovely canal house character.

To see more of Maartje’s illustrations, have a look at her website.

All pictures are by Margot van der Krogt, who runs the blog The Makers Amsterdam.