Theme Giant bulb -Blurring of the barge canal and their barges

Haarlem is the cradle of the tulip trade. Already in the golden age, the bulbs were very popular and there was a lot of trade in them. The city of Leiden was in line with Haarlem. The trade bulbs were transported by tow boats on the canal. Man and horse in the lead, through a wide landscape, rich soil for the cultivation of tulips. Sea on one side, lakes and peatlands on the other. A strip of the Netherlands that has a special history. A history that is fading over the years. Cars, trucks, motorcycles. The roads have become the main arteries of tulip transport.

Tourism has found its way to storm the bulb fields in large numbers in the spring and to capture the most beautiful colors on the sensitive digital plate. Especially at sunrise and sunset the landscape seems to merge into a colorful sea of fire.

The continuous movement and changes; a flow that we sometimes have an influence on, sometimes not. A movement that Mika has used in the painting technique. Creating new worlds in which history is still visible as a shadow, vague over a “heartbeat line” of Haarlem, Lisse and Leiden, which runs across the globe. Three prominent places that are connected by the canal.

Reuzenbol 'Vervaging van de trekvaart en hun schuiten' - Mika van Vonderen
Reuzenbol 'Vervaging van de trekvaart en hun schuiten' - Mika van Vonderen
Reuzenbol 'Vervaging van de trekvaart en hun schuiten' - Mika van Vonderen
Reuzenbol 'Vervaging van de trekvaart en hun schuiten' - Mika van Vonderen

Artist – Mika van Vonderen

From concentrated fiddling to ultimate freedom. Mika van Vonderen (1970) is a dreamer. Dreaming about freedom, she grew up as a farmer’s daughter in the town of Zeeland, as the middle of a family of five. Like a butterfly she whirled through her free childhood. A stubborn butterfly. “I did it my way or not.” She was always “making beautiful things”: painting, fumbling with all kinds of materials, building huts and weaving with reed grass

In her recent passion, motorcycling, these opposites come together. “Helmet on my head and go.” Constantly focused. No room for other thoughts. And at the same time become one with the environment, the universe. Is this the ultimate freedom? Her motor creates guts and influences her work. In the ‘Down Under’ series, the eggs and snouts make way for the underwater world. Alienating images.

Mika is always drawing, recording and registering. During her travels to India and Morocco, the countries where you are always surprised by the unexpected and have to let go of control. But her sketchbook also accompanies her liberating motorcycle rides. The control freak with the urge for ultimate freedom. So after all these years still that stubborn, creative butterfly.

Mika van Vonderen makes 2-dimensional work: Autonomous paintings and drawings. And she works with various materials and techniques on commission. Including on leather !! She works on various surfaces such as; wooden panels and concrete. Less focused on technique, but more room for coincidence and the viewer’s own interpretation.

To see her work:

Adopted by

This Giant Tulip Bulb is adopted by Stichting Accommodatie en Recreatie Lisse.


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