World Fine Art Professionals and their Key-Pieces, 76 - Saskia Wagenvoort
The photographic work of Saskia Wagenvoort was recently to be seen in gallery Sis Josip. She had an exhibition together with Inge-lize Zevenboom. Saskia Wagenvoort makes striking portraits. She does so in a style that she describes as ‘mixed and stitched photography’.
She chooses female models who she prepares and styles. Then she starts taking pictures, sometimes with and sometimes without attributes. She prints the pictures. In some of the photos – the portraits and still lifes sometimes – she begins operations. These operations aren’t made digitally, but physically. She adds flowers, necklaces, brooches, bead and fabrics to it. Sometimes she provides the pictures with embroidery, cross stitches or longer lines. Then she photographs the edited photos. The photos are printed in large format.
Saskia: “I constantly watch. Is it exciting enough? Should there be something else? Do I like it? Sometimes I immediately see what’s missing, sometimes a little later. In some portraits I mounted flies. As you sometimes see in 17th century still lifes. The flies are just a bit too big, but I find that fun.”
The girls and women in the pictures are brutal and tranquil at the same time. It shows Saskia’s already rich experience in fashion, advertising and film. Besides the fine there is also the element of impermanence and illusion.
Asked about her central theme she mentions three topics: impermanence, beauty and pain. “Beauty is fleeting. There’s emergence, flowering and decay. This is an ongoing process. A flower in full bloom will wither and die. This applies to all nature. As for the pain: everyone is damaged by something or someone in his life. Sometimes it disappears, leaves no traces and sometimes it does. The point is that you keep yourself together in the most beautiful way possible.”
She feels herself artist from 2012. Then she had her first solo exhibition. Before she worked with a photographer. She followed the Ubbo Emmius Teacher Education in Leeuwarden. “I did an internship at secondary schools. But I also had to do my art stuff: drawing, painting, etching and photography. Although photography was a small part, I loved to do it. I was day and night in the darkroom of the school and had everything tested. In addition, I always did the theater performances at school. I did the direction, production, makeup and clothing. I graduated in theater costumes and forgot photography a little.”
No lack of training with Saskia. She also followed the Media Academy for Production of Film & TV in Hilversum and two make-up courses in Amsterdam, at House of Orange and B-Academy. As a result of that training she has done castings, gave lessons, was a production assistent for film and TV, and she did a lot of make-up for advertising agencies and magazines.
She still does theater things, she gives guest lectures on grime and make-up at higher education schools, high schools and creativity centers. She was thinking of continuing in the theater world, but photography predominated.
In that field, she slowly starts to break through. It started last year, 2015. The Fries Museum offered an opportunity to young artists to place their studio for some time in the museum. At the same time they could exhibit their work. That worked fine for her. Gallery De Roos van Tudor in Leeuwarden invited her for an exhibition. And then an exhibition followed in The Hague, at Sis Josip Gallery. Recently her work hung at the Realisme Beurs in Amsterdam. “I sold two works. Awesome!”