Desert Flowers, Marjolein Dallinga

Marjolein Dallinga

Artist Statement

The natural world inspires me its sounds, feel and touch, the textures and forms. My work is inspired by feelings, thoughts and dreams.

I often dream of something deep and colorful, which moves and is very mysterious. There are many corners, strange places and holes; I feel them on and under my skin. True creativity does not spring from momentary inspiration. It derives from much experimentation, many mistakes and doing things over and over again. It comes from dreaming, from the workings of the subconscious and then perhaps something will materialize.

For several years I have tried to shape, sculpt, fold and cut this warm and woolly material through the process of felting during which it metamorphoses from an array of loose colorful fibers to a strong sturdy textile.

“Feel the fear and do it anyway” is an underlying emotional energy which urges me to create forms with wool. It is not a visual or intellectual motivation but more a gut feeling. The sculptures resemble parts of the human anatomy, some are like skin and others are more internal like a liver, kidney, or spleen. Some express something as mysterious as the heart or the strange plasticity of the brain. They vary in form, size and color. Some are empty, they have their secrets within their folds and craters and their longings hidden in their colors and layers. These sculptures are soft and light. Maybe someone else will be moved by them too.

If not I have failed.

The subject of pain fascinates me. With my sculptural feltwork I try to give shape to feelings of frustration and suffering, be it emotional or physical pain.

I try to visualize this inescapable pain, I want to get to know it and talk to it because I cannot ignore it. I would like to surrender to it and not be afraid of it because fear is pain too.
My wish is to express these emotions in a feltwork and be able to own it and embrace it.

There is a certain satisfaction in seeing and being seen. I would like to create a portrait of how I see the essence of a human being and how it is seen by others. As well I would like to give a form to the constantly changing of human interrelationships, how they flex and entwine and stagnate and how the forces of attraction and rejection can be expressed. We have a need to connect, to fuse and at times destruct.

It is from the dance of conflicting emotions that creativity and art are born. And the creative act is to find a balance within that, to create from that position of balance and to be recognized for that creative act. Though sculpture is usually perceived as static I see it more as movement, the movement of wool from fibers into felt.

And as long as there is movement there is life.