During exhibitions, Museum Valkenburg highlights, together with the artist or art connoisseurs, a specific work, this time ‘A private island’ by Nikki Pelaez.
A private island
I made this work of the woman with the island because I had read a book with the title ‘Een eigen Eiland’ written by Esther J. Ending. I had also read and seen a number of interviews with the writer and there was a lot of recognition for me.
She grew up in the 80s on the island of Ibiza and I grew up in the 80s on an island next to Ibiza; Mallorca. Two very similar islands in the Mediterranean, one slightly larger than the other.
The descriptions in the book of the beautiful landscape, the foreigners who live on the island and together form a community. . . it’s all so recognizable. . The scents, taste, nature and customs of the Balearic Islands (Mallorca, Ibiza, Menorca and Formentera) are so typical; lively, festive summers and melancholic winters with empty beaches, deserted villages and cafes where the fireplace is burning and the Spaniards unwind finally without tourists. Sometimes the island belongs to everyone and sometimes it’s just yours. Through all those years that I have lived on an island as a child and young adult, I always have a very special feeling about islands.
An island is also special in a symbolic way. . Do you know the expression: “No man is an island” – “No man is an island”?
You may think that you must be able to solve everything by yourself, but you do not have to remain isolated on your island, you do not have to be able to do it all alone in life. . you can get rid of your ‘island’ and ask for help. That is what life is all about, getting off your island and finding connections with other people.
A funny detail is that for this work I did not use the Balearic islands when placing the white dots, so no Mallorca, no Ibiza. . I didn’t like the shape. . that is why I chose another island, a sunny island: Santorini (Greece) That is the freedom of the artist; the form goes beyond the truth.
The exhibition of Nikki Pelaez ‘A strange delight’ can be seen until January 5, 2020, look here for more information: https://www.museumvalkenburg.nl/en/agenda/a-strange-delight-2/