Artist Marijke Breuers
ABOUT THE WORK
Material: grid, cotton threads, foam clay
In the summer of 2018 I happened to find a temporary studio in a recently abandonedmonastery in Utrecht. The last... Read More
In the summer of 2018 I happened to find a temporary studio in a recently abandoned
monastery in Utrecht. The last Franciscans had just moved to a new monastic community
leaving behind a beautiful garden.
Being a visual artist I love to be inspired by abandoned home interiors and remnants of
furniture left behind. I am curious to know how previous residents used to live and how their
home and its immediate surroundings influenced their lives. So I look for traces they left
behind and try to discover what kind of choices they made and how much room they had to
control their own lives.
Though the austere architecture of the monastery, which was built in 1901, did not
immediately appeal to me, the stories told by its previous residents and their guests were
fascinating. The traces they left behind in the building, the cellars and the garden helped me
to understand a little more about the life they lived together in a regular daily rhythm of
work, communal prayer in the chapel and meals shared together in the refectory, but also
providing for comfortable private spaces to be used by the very last residents, now mostly
In late autumn a nasturtium still bloomed in the monastery garden among the gravel of the
oval path used by the Franciscans for their meditative walks and prayers. In my work I used
the leaves of the blooming plant and the stones in the garden to show my interpretation of
their lives, between heaven and earth...
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