For Dutch photographer Isabelle van Zeijl, self-portraits have always instilled a sense of self-identity and empowerment.
“The fact that I make self-portraits stems from the fact that I grew up in a violent and troubled household,” says the 44-year-old artist. I have healed myself through my work, and I believe that being surrounded by beauty has a cleansing effect.”
When Van Zeijl became a professional artist, this influence extended to those around the world who saw her work.
“When I started exhibiting and exhibiting my work internationally, collectors said they wanted to surround themselves with the work,” she says. “They were going through a tough time, but the beauty lifted them up. The feeling that my work makes me feel good is the biggest compliment I get from people who have seen my work. In every crisis there is beauty to be found.In every difficult situation there is a gift.”
In his self-portraits, van Zijl often portrays himself with an open yet ambivalent expression. In many parts she appears calm, but in other parts she appears amused or thoughtful. Sometimes her face is completely hidden.She is often adorned with flowers, veils, or whimsical headpieces. forbes, wall street international and on the cover Harper’s Bazaar.
Created in 2020 when COVID-19 devastated the Dutch flower industry, the revival of the Dutch Floral Collection features Van Zeil surrounded by orchids and roses salvaged from local growers I’m doing it.
“I went to those growers and got as many flowers as I could,” she recalls. “I wanted to convey a message of positivity, a message of rebirth. Again, there is beauty to be found in every crisis.”
The Moonshot collection was inspired and created in Colorado. After finding solace in equine therapy during a difficult past, Van Zeijl embarked on an adventure in 2019.
“Horses reflect your deepest fears. You have to overcome your own insecurities and insecurities in order to calm them down or be there for them,” she says. “We searched for wild horses for six hours. When I found them, I said, I had my camera and got within a meter of them. The guide said I said, I don’t know.Maybe it’s surrender.Maybe it’s to be at peace with yourself and tell the horse.
Van Zeijl rode a fresh wave of courage from this experience to Moonshot Ranch, a friend’s ranch in Aspen, where he created the series. She spent her week photographing herself at night, boldly incorporating her two horses (one black and one white) from her ranch into her nude self-portraits. rice field.
“We were shooting the horses for this series in a barn at midnight with a full moon outside. I was outside my comfort zone. I think people are very surprised by these poses.The horse’s big head is lying on my hand.His feet are one step away from my bare toes.I surrender myself to the moment. I got them by
Embarking on this experience was certainly what Van Zeiji would classify as a moonshot, or an extreme long shot.
“For me, this seemed like Mission Impossible,” she says. “Before working with horses, I was overwhelmed by their power and control. I was always afraid of horses, but what people say is true. Your greatest growth potential is the moment you get so close to that horse I learned you can do this. We hope it will be an inspiration to chase the moonshot and remind us that anything is possible.”
Afternoon with Isabelle
Join Van Zeil on his first visit to Vail with Isabel at the Christopher Martin Gallery at 100 E. Meadow Dr. The event will run from 1pm to 4pm on August 21st and will feature music, food and an open bar. For more information, call (970) 470-4535.