Fabric collages by Janneke Laheij are currently on display in the Upper Room of Museum Valkenburg.
Janneke Laheij (1946) studied at the Art Academy Maastricht and obtained her first degree certificate in Free Textile Teaching Methods in 1972. During her studies Janneke developed a technique for making collages with self-dyed fabrics. The combination of years of skill to create a ‘tangibly’ good portrait with oil paint and the new possibility to achieve another dimension by means of the typical properties of transparent substances, enable her to create a ‘moving’ representation of someone’s personality. to make.
This is clearly visible in the series of portraits entitled: “Anna-Laura”
Is a look time-bound? For years Janneke Laheij thought so. Whenever she saw the portrait of the woman, whom she called Anna for herself, it conveyed to her the look of an era: subdued yet self-aware: the mystery of a liberating age. She thought that until one day in 2012 she accidentally met a young woman who looked exactly the same way: Laura. A woman of today with a different color of eyes, without a prominent headgear, without jewelry, her hair combed back loosely. And yet that look. What was the secret this time?
Not a historian, but a portraitist, Janneke Laheij decided to search for an answer with the resources available to her. Was it the specific shape of the eyes, the combination of face and clothing, the intensity of the technique used by the painter? In response to fifteenth-century glacis, in which underlying layers enhance color and gaze from the inside, she made portraits with contemporary transparent fabrics, the layering of which works both from the inside to the outside and allows a penetration inward.
The exhibition can still be seen until September 20, more info: https://www.museumvalkenburg.nl/en/agenda/janneke-laheij-and-rob-stultiens/