It was the spring of 2019, and I just heard from one of my family members that the hospital "Heilig Hart"in Lier, gave the opportunity to artist, to showcase their works in their entrance hall and all main corridors.
I was drawn to it immediately. Especially because I have been painting and teaching for years to the elderly who suffer from dementia, at the resting home Salvé in Brasschaat. Two days a week I went to my group of elderly people, watching them discover that little spark of life again. Triggered when they could hold that brush and let their imagination run wild on a little canvas.
So, after 5 years of doing this, I had to quit because of my health. But I still felt that I hadn't closed that chapter yet. So when I heard about that opportunity to exhibit in the Heilig Hart Hospital I thought this would be the perfect location. I sensed that this would be some sort of tipping point. A kind of reflection on the past that I wanted to leave behind.
As the last year and a half, I only have been painting "en plein air". And this freedom, of being in the open nature, turned out to be a totally new, incredibly and exciting experience. For the first time in my life, I felt that this was what I was looking.
But back to the exhibition, since there was a lot of space, because of the many corridors, I was able to create an overview of the works of the past (which are completely different) and the works "en plein air". This turned out to be very challenging. So, the hospital offered me to only show my works from the period of 27/10/19 to 5/01/20. In the end, this accounted for more than 200 paintings and drawings.
The preparation was fierce and exhausting and emotional. After all, each work has its own specific story, so I went through it all. But I was so proud when I walked through the corridors with a whole history of colorful stories on the walls. I will never forget one patient response: "Well now, this makes me really happy, with all these colours!" he said as he walked down the hall with his intravenous drip. "Mission accomplished" I thought, and I felt a warm glow. I was emotional. So that's the little story of this video. I have to thank my youngest son and brother-in-law, who recorded and produced this little video of the exhibition. It records the opening day. They came with a big professional camera. Made a nice movie and did an interview.
Just great and very exciting!
I am happy to share it with you. Enjoy.