Paula is a series of photographs of the artist’s daughter and muse. These pictures are contemporary and unusual interpretations of works by the acknowledged masters of the golden age of Dutch art.
Paula invites its viewer to participate in a dialogue with time, art and him-/herself. In his works Hendrik Kerstens addresses the tradition of XVII century Dutch portraiture. The images by Rembrandt, Vermeer, Frans Hals find in his works an unusual and controversial manifestation.
Paula is an allegory of eternal femininity put in contemporary context. Approachable and defiant, caring and distant, provocative and pedantic, she stares directly at the viewer. With a black backdrop, her pale skin reminds one of white marble. Her confident and proud gaze will keep your mind occupied with Paula for a long time.
Hendrik Kerstens was born in 1956 in The Hague. He studied photography on his own and in 1995 he decided to dedicate himself completely to photo-art. His professionalism was first noticed because of his works documenting the major landmarks of his daughter’s life. In 2008 he received Taylor Wessing award in the field of photo-portrait.
Hendrik Kerstens’ works were exhibited in Amsterdam, Brussels, London, New York, Los Angeles and Latin America and are featured in various collections, including Erasmus University of Rotterdam, Santa Barbara Museum of Art, Gemeente Museum in The Hague and private collections. His photographs were published in the American Photo Magazine and featured on the covers of Domus, The New York Times Magazine, ARTnews Magazine. In 2013 Kertens’ photo-session for Harper’s Bazaar was prized with Lucie Awards.
As a part of the Russia-Netherlands cross-cultural year this exhibition was shown in Moscow, Nizhniy Novgorod and Ekaterinburg.