Over the past few years, I have been painting people who leave their homes for an uncertain future. That can be in order to improve their living conditions. Or to find freedom of or from religion. Or to flee from war and oppression. I believe this is one of the big issues that we face today, in Europe and elsewhere. On the one hand people looking for a better life, on the other hand, people trying to protect their way of life.
I believe people must open their doors to people in need. I see the faces of people knocking on Europe's door and I do not want to let that fade way as just another news item. So I paint the portraits of people who leave their homes in search of a better life. On large canvases, 120x180 cm, oil on linen using a sponge.
I paint in series. What's in a name (of God), about what it is like to be born in a certain area, with a certain religion which defines who you are but also may cause you to run. What do they leave behind, who do they leave behind, African women fleeing from violence and hunger. Fortune seeker or son of hope, young African men leaving their homes to find a better future and to support the family they leave behind. And Concert Europe, Europeans increasingly singing the song of closing borders.