Portraits made in Earth

The series Old and new heroes (made) of the earth is the sequel to the series Rembrandt rises from dutch soilThis series contains portraits of old heroes, inspirers within Rembrandt's circle, and new heroes, like Tommy Wieringa, Jane Goodall and Amanda Gorman. “They are heroes in the sense that they inspire, dare to identify the problem and encourage people to reflect. They are famous and lesser known people, in the end all heroes are human. A human being made of elements of the earth. The heroes look at you and sometimes even right through you. In other words, the earth looks at you and makes contact with you. You make contact with nature in a very special way. 

I prefer to portray the person live. During the first sketch in my studio, you can choose from the places you have an affinity with, from my collection of sand, earth, shells, coal, feathers and bark from different parts of the world and the (oak ) wooden panel.

Come and look 12 Old and New Heroes (made) of the Earth at the exhibition in the church of Broek in Waterland.Take a preview here:

Tommy Wieringa ; Amanda Gorman ; Jane Goodall ; Channa Samkalden ; BLM ; Zelensky ; Saskia ; Hendrickje ; Titus Volwassen ; Marina Ovsjannikova ; Jelle Ozinga ; Willem Beunis ; Zelfportret Judith Dubois ; Maarten.

Tommy Wieringa

This portrait of writer Tommy Wieringa is made live, out of sand and soil from different parts of the Netherlands, Africa and the Antilles, (freshwater) mussel, coal, marl, birch bark and quill pen on an oak panel.
The painting is made of sand from his Dutch native province Overijssel and sand from the Antilles, where he spent part of his early childhood. Soil and sand from the Sahara referring to his travels in Morocco and sand that he himself brought from the foot of Kilimanjaro. Also soil from Tanzania and other parts of Africa. Sand from Terschelling, Drenthe and soil from the polder, where he currently lives, is also part of the portrait, with a piece of freshwater mussel as home button. Marl from Limburg and sand with warm colors from the Veluwe have been used for the light on the face, the lips consist of Tegelen clay and coral; pieces of shell and coal form his dark eyes. The feather is (probably) from a magpie.

Amanda Gorman

This portrait of the American poet Amanda Gorman is made of sand and soil from different parts of Africa, the Antilles, Suriname and California and freshwater mussel, Giant Sequoia bark and shell.

Amanda Gorman became known worldwide for her reading of her poem “The hill we climb” at the inauguration ceremony of the President of the U.S.A. Joe Biden. Her striking words made a huge impression. She speaks out against discrimination and fights for racial equality and gender justice. A great inspiration and a hero.

In the painting you can see sand from California, where she was born and raised. Sand from Africa, where her ancestors' roots lie. It also contains soil from the Antilles and Suriname, places where slaves were traded. The coral and oak panel symbolize the long sea voyages the slaves had to endure. Gorman's teeth are made of oyster shell and her hair of coal. Her hands, which are an important part of Gorman's performance as a poet and speaker, are made of Giant Sequoia bark from California. This tree symbolizes strength and perseverance, two qualities that Gorman herself possesses. Her collar is made of freshwater mussel and the yellow shell refers to Gorman's expressive outfit she wore during her famous speech.

This painting of a 'new hero' is related to the portrait of an 'old hero', a portrait called BLM (Black Lives Matter) inspired by Rembrandt's painting 'Two African Men', which dates from a special period of 30 years in the first part of the 17the century, a period when there was a close African community in Amsterdam and they were equal citizens.

Gorman fights against inequality as a result of the centuries-long slavery period. Although they are portraits of heroes from completely different time periods, they both symbolize freedom and equality. 

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Jane Goodall

This portrait of Jane Goodall is made of sand and soil from different parts of Africa, Giant Sequoia bark from California, marl, mussels and coal. 

Jane Goodall is known for her valuable work as an anthropologist and biologist. She is best known for her study of the social and family life of chimpanzees. She discovered that the homo sapiens are not the only thinking species and that chimpanzees had deep relationships with congeners. The Jane Goodall Institute takes care for the climate and living environment of the chimpanzee and tackles poaching, for example. Jane Goodall is a hero for nature. 

The painting is made of sand and soil from Africa, the place where Jane Goodall has devoted her life. Marl was used to create Goodall's skin color. Her hair is made from mussel shells. The chimpanzee is made of sand from Italy, specifically ferruginous beach sand from southern Tuscany, soil from Africa and coal. The mouths of both Jane Goodall and the chimpanzee are made partly from a little slice of Giant Sequoia bark from California. 

Judith Dubois has had the honor of seeing Jane Goodall live in 1993 during the exhibition 'Ape-Man, Man-Ape' in the 'Pesthuis' in front of the National Natural History Museum in Leiden about Eugène Dubois, her great-uncle. He was in 1893 a paleontologist and he was the first to find evidence for Darwin's theory of evolution. "Jane Goodall also attended and spoke at a special event to mark the opening of the exhibition. A very inspiring woman.”

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Channa Samkalden

This portrait of Channa Samkalden is made of sand and soil from different parts of the Netherlands, Africa, the Dolomites and Tuscany and contains scallop shell, coal, birch bark, Giant Seqouia bark and freshwater mussel.

Channa Samkalden is a lawyer and known for the case against Shell. She represented four Nigerian farmers and the Milieudefensie Association in proceedings against Shell for oil pollution in Nigeria. Ultimately, after 13 years of litigation, she brought Shell to its knees and they won the case.

The painting contains a scallop shell – the shell in the Shell logo – which Channa smashed into pieces herself. The shell is incorporated in the bands, the white pleated strip that is part of a lawyer's attire. The toga is made of coal, which is a reference to the case against Shell and fossil energy. In her hand she holds a scroll made of birch bark, referring to the file documents. She is also holding two quills, one from a duck from the polder and current residence and one from a buzzard. Just like that bird can keep an overview by seeing everything from a distance, Channa Samkalden had overview on the case.
The tips of the quills point to a piece of rock, which came from an oil well 2,500 thousand meters deep in the earth, which refers to the case against Shell and here the fine print in the contract. Part of her hand and hair are made from Giant Sequoia bark from California. A freshwater mussel rests on her shoulder, around which more small pieces of mussel shine light on the document in her hands. The painting also contains sand and soil from Africa – a reference to the four Nigerian farmers – and from Tuscany, where Samkalden lived and studied.

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Black Lives Matter

This portrait is inspired by Rembrandt's painting 'Two African Men'. The portrait is part of the series 'Rembrandt rises from Dutch earth' and is thus made of sand and soil only from the Netherlands. For example, the man's hair is made of coal and a piece of clothing has been created by using oyster shells. The portrait is made on an oak panel.

In the painting 'Two African Men' from 1661, which can be admired in the Mauritshuis, Rembrandt painted two African men as the main subject instead of portraying them as minor figures or slaves, as was done later in and after the 17th centurythe often happened. They were probably two free men from Rembrandt's neighbourhood. In this portrait by Dubois, she zoomed in on one of the two men, the one who impressed with his gaze. According to Dubois, the eyes are the most important element in a portrait painting.

This painting of an 'old hero' is related to the portrait of the 'new hero' Amanda Gorman. The portrait of the African man dates from the time at the beginning of the transatlantic slavery period. Gorman fights against the racial inequality that stems from slavery. Although they are portraits of heroes from completely different time periods, they both symbolize freedom and equality. 

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Zelensky

Portrait of Zelensky, President of Ukraine, a hero who cannot be missed in the series 'Old and New Heroes (made) of the Earth'. Made of soil and sand from Poland, the Black Sea near Georgia, stone from the Dolomites, marl, lapis lazuli, sand and soil from the Netherlands, mussel shell and yellow shell Corculum cardissa on oak panel. 

The yellow shell Corculum cardissa and the blue mussel shell symbolize the Ukrainian flag. Stone from the Dolomites stands for strength and resistance. Sand from Poland represents the many refugees in Poland. Sand from the Black Sea symbolises the battle for access to the ports. The blue sky of lapis lazuli, the stone of friendship, for the support of the Ukrainians amongst eachother and the surrounding countries. Marl, sand and soil from the Netherlands stands for the connection and reception of Ukrainian refugees in the Netherlands and the home button of freshwater mussel for the refugees in Broek in Waterland.

The entire proceeds of the portrait will be donated to Giro555. You can bid for the painting starting from an amount of 2,500 euros. Send a message via the contact form van deze website. Zo gaat er geen geld verloren aan veiling of bemiddelingskosten. Aan het eind van de expositie op 6 juni wordt de hoogste bieder gecontacteerd over de aankoop. Het bieden wordt (indien gewenst anoniem) op de website en ter plekke bijgehouden.

Nice combination: you will have a unique and beautiful portrait painting on your wall and at the same time a huge donation to charity!

The portrait can be admired during the exhibition in the Broeker Kerk that takes place from April 27 to June 6, Kerkplein 13, Broek in Waterland. Check news for more info

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Saskia

This portrait of Saskia, Rembrandt's first wife, is part of the series 'Rembrandt's inner circle' and is made of sand and soil from the Netherlands, such as mussel shell, freshwater mussel, cockles and a pen feather on an oak panel.

Saskia was Rembrandt's first wife and was his great muse. When Rembrandt painted women, they often resembled Saskia, because she acted often as a model for him. According to Dubois, the fact that she inspired Rembrandt in this way makes her a hero. 

The skin color of Saskia is made of marl. The blue in Saskia's eyes comes from the mussel shell. At the bottom right, a freshwater mussel shines, which could represent a mirror or small screen. At the bottom on the left is a beautiful oyster shell, with two pieces of cockle from the Wadden above it. With the pen quill at the bottom left Saskia writes her own history. The portrait is made on an oak panel with beautiful curls and is part of a triptych. The panel was sawn in three to create a triptych Rembrandt with his two muses: Saskia and Hendrickje (Rembrandt's second wife). They form together one piece. 

According to Dubois, the eyes are the most important element in a portrait painting. You get the feeling that someone is looking back at you. Or rather, that the earth is looking at you.

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Hendrickje

This portrait of Hendrickje, Rembrandt's second wife, is part of the series 'Rembrandt's inner circle' and is made of earth elements from the Netherlands, such as marl and oyster shell. There's also coral for the red dress and lips.

The portrait is made on an oak panel with beautiful curls and is part of a triptych. The panel has been sawn in three to create a triptych of Rembrandt with his two lovers: Saskia (Rembrandt's first wife) and Hendrickje . They form together on piece. 
Hendrickje and Titus, Rembrandt's son, ensured that Rembrandt could continue his work when he went bankrupt. Together with Titus she started a BV and they became art dealers for Rembrandt. 

The red of Hendrickje's lips and her dress is made of red coral. The skin color is created by the use of marl. The earring is a small piece of an oyster shell. At the bottom on the right there is a key. In the original painting by Rembrandt, this key cannot be seen entirety, but disappears in Hendrickje's dress at the height of her heart. Judith Dubois' theory is therefore that it is the key to the safe and her heart. 

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Titus as adult

This portrait of Titus is part of the series 'Rembrandt rises from Dutch soil' and is therefore made of earth elements from the Netherlands, such as marl, coal, tree bark, feather and oyster shell. 

The portrait consists soil and sand from various places in the Netherlands, such as the Veluwe, the North See beach, marl and coal from Limburg. For example, the skin color is made of marl from the marl caves in Maastricht. The black at his collar is coal from Limburg. Titus' hat is made of ground roof tile clay of Tegelen. To create his curls, a piece of bark has been incorporated into his hair. The highlight on his nose is a piece of oyster shell and his eyes are made from shells from the Dutch beach. At the bottom left of his shoulder and in the background right are pen feathers, which symbolize the many writing exercises he did at his desk as a boy. See the painting of young Titus.

Although Rembrandt had several children, Titus was the only son who did not die at a very early age. Titus often posed for Rembrandt and often appeared in his paintings. Rembrandt spent so much money that at one point he went bankrupt. It was Titus together with Rembrandt's second wife, Hendrickje, became art dealers so that Rembrandt could continue painting. Titus died of the plague at the age of 26, a few months before Rembrandt died. Rembrandt was very attached to Titus, perhaps he could not bear the grief of his death. Rembrandt died one year later, in 1669, at the age of 63. 

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Marina Ovsjannikova

Portrait of Marina Ovsyannikova is made of sand from Poland, the Black Sea near Georgia, birch bark, mussel shell, corculum cardissa shell, marl, coal and a pearl on oak wooden panel.

During a broadcast of the news on Russian state television, Marina Ovshannikova unfolded a handwritten anti-war poster that read "No war, stop the war, don't believe the propaganda, here they lie to you, Russians are against war" with in the corner drawn the colors of the Ukrainian flag. She worked for this channel and has now resigned. She was fined for her action and her further fate is not yet known.

The entire proceeds of the portrait will be donated to Giro555. You can bid for the painting starting from an amount of 1,500 euros. Send a message via the contact form on this website. No money is lost on auction or brokerage costs. At the end of the exhibition on 6 June, the highest bidder will be contacted about the purchase. The bidding is tracked (anonymously if desired) on the website and on site.

Nice combination: you will have a unique and beautiful portrait painting on your wall and at the same time a huge donation to charity!

The portrait can be admired during the exhibition in the Broeker Kerk that takes place from April 27 to June 6, Kerkplein 13, Broek in Waterland. Check news for more info

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Jelle Ozinga

Dit portretschilderij van Jelle is gemaakt van zand en aarde uit Nederland op een eikenhouten paneel.
Jelle is de zoon van een goede vriendin van Judith Dubois. Hij was vijftien toen hij geportretteerd werd en staat op jonge leeftijd al op de planken. Misschien zal hij later een geweldige cabaretier worden, maar een held op het podium is hij sowieso al. 

Het belangrijkste van dit schilderij en van alle portretschilderijen uit deze serie zijn volgens Judith Dubois de ogen. Net als bij de portretten van Rembrandt kijkt de persoon je echt aan en heb je het gevoel dat iemand terugkijkt. Of anders gezegd, dat de aarde je aankijkt. Zodra je dat gevoel te pakken hebt, is een schilderij volgens Judith geslaagd.  

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Willem Beunis

Dit portretschilderij van Willem Beunis is gemaakt van aarde elementen uit Nederland, zoals mergel, steenkool, (zoetwater)mossel, en het portret is gemaakt op een houten paneel. 

Willem is geboren en getogen in Limburg, vandaar dat er bijvoorbeeld voor zijn huidskleur gebruik is gemaakt van mergel uit de Limburgse mergelgrotten. Hij is erg begaan met de zee en varen, het gebruik van de zoetwatermossel verwijst hiernaar. Zijn bijzondere wenkbrauwen zijn opgebouwd uit steenkool uit de mijnen in Zuid-Limburg. 

Willem Beunis is een jeugdvriend van Pieter Dubois, Judith’s broer. Het portret was in opdracht gemaakt en een cadeau aan Willem van Pieter. 

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Zelfportret Judith Dubois

Rembrandt staat bekend om zijn vele zelfportretten, vandaar dit zelfportret van Judith Dubois. Voor dit schilderij is gebruik gemaakt van zand en aarde uit Toscane, Californië, Limburg en de polder, berkenbast en zoetwatermossel.
Voor het haar is gebruik gemaakt van berkenbast, wat terugslaat op de naam ‘Dubois’; in het Frans betekent dit ‘van het hout’ of ‘van het bos’. De ogen zijn gemaakt van mosselen. Judith Dubois heeft Limburgse roots, vandaar dat er verschillende soorten mergel zijn verwerkt in het portret. Het rood van de lippen is gemalen dakpannenklei, van de dakpannenfabriek van de opa van Judith. Verder is er zand en aarde uit Toscane gebruikt, van plekken en huizen waar Judith jarenlang heeft gewoond. De slierten die de kraag vormen, zijn van de boombast van de Giant Sequoia boom uit Californië, de plek waar Judith begon met haar zandschilderijen. De sequoia is een bijzondere boom die staat voor kracht en volharding, terwijl de bast wel heel zacht is. De boom staat daarom ook symbool voor het karakter van Judith. Verder is er ook marmerpoeder gebruikt, wederom een link naar Italië, en een zoetwatermossel uit de polder waar ze momenteel woont.

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Vermeers Meisje

Dit portretschilderij van Vermeers Meisje is gemaakt van aarde en zand uit Nederland, California, Italië en Frankrijk en bevat marmerpoeder, lapis lazuli en een oesterschelp op een eikenhouten paneel. Voor de blauwe hoofddoek van het Vermeers Meisje is gebruik gemaakt van marmerpoeder en lapis lazuli, een gesteente met een intense azuurblauwe kleur uit Afghanistan. De ogen zijn gemaakt van zoetwatermossel en gewone mossel. Het kraagje is een oesterschelp en de mouw is opgebouwd uit aarde uit Toscane en Californië. De lippen zijn gemaakt van kleine stukjes koraal en Tegelse dakpannenklei. De lijnen van het eikenhouten paneel bewegen prachtig mee met de houding van het meisje.
Het portret van het Vermeers Meisje maakte Dubois voor de wedstrijd ‘Het Geheim van de Meester’.

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Maarten

Dit portretschilderij is gemaakt van aarde elementen uit Nederland, lapus lazuli, oesterschelpen, dakpannenklei uit Limburg op een houten paneel. 
De lapus lazuli, een blauw gesteente uit Afghanistan, is gebruikt voor zijn bril. Zijn ogen zijn gemaakt van mosselen. Naast aarde en zand uit Noord-Holland – de provincie waar Maarten woonde – bevat het schilderij ook zand van een wel heel bijzondere plek, namelijk de plek waar Maarten, die inmiddels is overleden, ligt begraven. Dit zand is verwerkt in zijn baard. Het rood bij zijn hals en bij zijn neus is dakpannenklei uit Limburg en de highlights op zijn gezicht zijn gecreëerd door het gebruik van oesterschelpen. 

Maarten was de neef van Judith Dubois. Hij was een markante man. Hij organiseerde events in het Amsterdamse poppodium Paradiso, waar hij een bijzondere status genoot door zijn stimulatie van vooruitstrevende muziek. Het portretschilderij was een cadeau van de zus van Maarten aan haar broer. 

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Bekijk hier alle portretten van aarde in de gallery: