05 November 2008

Invited Guest: Marrigje de Maar

Invited Guest: Marrigje de Maar



Enchanted spaces - Yunnan, China.

I am a restless traveler, who keeps on leaving, but never arrives.

I have been taking pictures of interiors since 2002. In the beginning I worked in worn out, rejected buildings, later I concentrated on private homes.
Interiors tell stories about people. In public space people follow the global trends and fashions. In their homes they tend to make other choices. The private space is the only place where we are ourselves.The personal story is told inside the privacy of our home.

I never travel along a pre-fixed route. My trips are guided by intuition and by experiences along the way. Roads that attract me, people I meet and stories I hear. The doors I choose to knock on rarely hold a clue about what I may find inside.
I never visualize anything beforehand and my pictures reflect my first impressions.
The image comes alive in the existing light.

Many of my interiors give evidence of a frugile life, of inhabitants who are able to make their personalities known with only a few means. In my work I concentrate on this authenticity and dignity.
My pictures tell a story about these people, a story that reaches beyond material reality.


Everything visible in the picture was there. I never change anything. I only use the available light. I use colournegative film and print both analoge and digital. During this proces no drastic changes are made either.



Marrigje de Maar - 2008





















You can enjoy more of Marrigje's work by clicking here

Photos by Marrigje de Maar

Invited by Darren Hepburn

13 comments:

jeanne wells said...

These are stunning photos -- I love ruin in all its forms.

marrigje de maar said...

Hello Jeanne,
These are not exactly ruins, but normal living spaces in rural modern China. Where you see a broken wall - that opening in the wall was made during Cultural Revolution. This house was originally a very large house from a big landlord. The Red Guards divided these houses up in smaller dwellings and gave them to the peasants. So they build walls through the middle of big halls and made extra openings in side-walls. You see signs of this on many places in Yunnan.

abeku said...

Interesting work. How much is the cultural revolution discussed in today's China?

Anonymous said...

Love the colors and the stories !!!

tatiana

f. skott said...

Wonderful pictures!

marrigje de maar said...

Hello Abeku,
The cultural Revolution is not a hot topic in China now. Sometimes people refer to it and their reaction differs from place to place/person to person, depending on what they or their family went trough. In Yunnan many of the Bai people were very happy with the Red Guards. The Red Guards gave them farms and houses and helped them to protect themselves against the much wilder tribes higher up in the mountains. Tribes as the EE people often robbed the farmers further down in the vallies.
This year many more questions were asked about how the situation was in my home country. The Olympics not only opened China up to the world, but the Chinese people also learned that there was a prosperous world outside of China. In the years before this happened much less.

marcin górski said...

wonderful. trip in time, for me, brings me back to my trips to China I made over 15 years ago. I can feel the smells of those places from your photographs. excellent pictures

paolo saccheri said...

very beautiful pictures and a grand document!
A wide and interesting project visible through your site.

marrigje de maar said...

For those in the US. Today my show opened at Blue Sky Gallery, Portland, Oregon. A large number of pictures from 2005 and 2007. I know it is not exactly in the centre, but if you happen to go that way....

Rhonda said...

These photos are simply fabulous!

Jan Buse said...

Great stuff. I see a kinship to some other (!) great dutch masters, like Veermer. Is that a coincidence?

marrigje de maar said...

I am Dutch and I grew up on the coast between Delft and Leiden. Of course the Dutch 'water'light is in my blood. And yes, I grew up with all those paintings very near me. So when it turns up in my pictures is it coincidentle? I am not deliberatly copy-ing the old masters, but they are a part of my cultural identity. At the other hand there is also some Atget and Walker Evans in my pictures. Some Rene Burri and the former Swiss photojournal Camera. When you have my age you have picked up a lot of things in many places.

TammyPatrice said...

I was going to say Rembrandt. Your approach is respectful and it shows in your work. I haven't seen such honoring images of meager belongings and the dignity of the habitants that I can recall. Thank you for sharing your experiences and good luck on the show in Portland. I am looking forward to exploring your site.