Sunday, March 18, 2012

Thank you Press in Amsterdam and New York (and my Mum)!

 commisioned water color of Dutch Interior for Residence (MariskaMeijers)
Editor's letter with my water color sketch

Ikat and Daisy birchwood trays in NYC&G magazine
 and on the NYC&G website
 With publicist and political scienist Mei Li Vos
 at the Esta Magazine event

Oeps, I completely forgot to post some new press on my blog. I posted some of it on facebook and can't remember if I tweeted. TOO many things to maintain! Anyway I am proud to share this wonderful artist profile in Dutch magazine Residence which since the arrival of editor in chief Jantien Nunnikhoven has become an absolute gem. Jantien also asked me to do an illustraion for the magazine with the theme "Holland's Glorie". Thank you Residence, Jantien and team for the wonderful exposure!
And then to my big suprise I received a message from my brother Bobby Berk in New York with a picture of NYC&G magazine (New York Cottages and Gardens) where he spotted 3 of my birchwood tray designs in Zoe Settle's article "Best in Show" about the NYIGF. Checking the magazine's website I saw my trays featured again. A big thank you NYC&G and Zoe!
Last but not least I attended an event yesterday organized by Dutch magazine Esta. I was selected out of 150 nominees to compete with 2 other talented women for the "creative" woman of the year award.
In a 2 minute presentation we had to tell why we are the best. Oh bummer it is something I do not like at all but it had to be done. There is something about talking in public. I am good with words, or at least I think. Writing is fine, an interview for a magazine or even the various TV appearances I had so far went all just fine, but standing in front of an audience....It is nerve wrecking. I have this "huge potato" in my throat when I speak and I tend to get emotional because it is oh so personal. Well I didn't win, I guess I am just not a Jack of all Trades but I am proud that I did it, speak I mean. Thank you ESTA and editor in chief Ellen de Jong I am already grateful for the nomination and congratulations to the winner film editor Elsbeth Kasteel!
Not sure whether you want to read what I said or at least what I wanted to say, because I forgot bits and pieces in all my nervousness but here it is.....(and I dedicate these words to my mother, love you mum!).

"My name is Mariska Meijers, mother of 2 kids. I live and work in Amsterdam as an artist-designer. I have my own label, including home accessories that are sold worldwide in (department) stores like Galeries Lafayette in Paris and Neiman Marcus in the US. You must think WOW what a success when you hear this, but what you don't know is that this part of my life only started a few years back.
I come from an artistic family. My mother was an opera singer. For hours she would practice to perfect her part in upcoming productions. As a child I joined her many times to the Opera and I would sit backstage next to the firemen, listening to my mother, goose bumps especially when the audience bravoed her. She could touch people with her voice and I felt that I wanted to do something like that too. Touching people. But life turned out very different. I did not choose an artistic education but went to law school and became a corporate lawyer for an international bank. But I did love that job for a long time and forgot all about my creative ambitions as a child. I travelled the world business class in high heels and suit. But a few years back I started to feel empty and the emptyness grew into a big black hole that could have swallowed me. I got out, in time, by myself. Got rid of the job and started all over again. Brush and canvas, no training, no track record of any kind in the art and design industry. Over the last 5-6 years I have been building my brand. It started with painting and from there I developed various product lines such as stationary, pillows, trays with much more to follow. Sold in over 15 countries already. A bumpy but wonderful road. I am proud that I am now in a position to touch people with my decorative arts like my mother did with her voice."
My parents (Christmas 2011)

Sunday, March 11, 2012

In Respectful Memory of Marieke van den Heuvel-Wessels

Bright, cheerful and intelligent. Only a few characteristics of Marieke Wessels. I met her for the first time in 2003 when I became head strategic client marketing for ABN AMRO's wholesale division. She was part of our team, the youngest member but she was more grown up than most of us :)).
We worked intensly together but she was also part of my personal journey in the pursuit of my passion. It was her dream as well that when the time would be right to evolve in a more creative direction.
In May 2009 she called me that she was in hospital and that "things" were not looking good. Marieke was diagnosed with cancer. Shortly after that she started a blog "Ik wou dat ik een toverstafje had" which translates "I wish I had a magic wand". The blog is a wonderful written testimony of a feisty girl with an enormous stamina. Unfortunately her spirit was conquered by her unreliable body.
Yesterday I attended the funeral. Marieke (as we know Marieke) had to have the last words as she spoke to us in her good bye video. Dear Marieke YOU will not be forgotten and YES I promise I will live every day to the best of my ability and enjoy! I wish your husband Lukas, your parents, brother, parents in law and other family and friends a lot of strenght. Until we meet again in your creative heaven xox

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Tea in the City

Abstract Neon with Teapot and Tea Cup (oil and gold leaf on canvas 40x40cm)
Sipping on a cup of tea right now, taking a moment to relax  is exactly what I need.  Constant chaos here in the house, the kids bustling in and out, friends visiting, finishing paintings that will me on show over the next few months at various locations in The Netherlands and Belgium. First exhibition of this year is already up and running at Tea in the City in Amsterdam.

Just moving to a new location, Tea in the City sells a wide range of teas and accessories to have your tea with style. Evelyn, the shop owner, one of my first clients has done a wonderful job with her new shop located in the southern part of Amsterdam on the Beethovenstraat.
Just inside of Tea in the City

My painting and products feel right at home! The exhibition features works highlighting the beauty of traditional Delft pottery, Asian ceramica, sweet cakes, and of course, tea! The paintings dot the staircase and are mostly shown in the salon upstairs.

While the exhibition is running, my pillows and trays will be brightening the window front against Amsterdam's grey skies!

Our New Window Display

Maybe just a sweet little tea tray to serve tea and biscuits on! Yum.


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