Saint John’s Eve postcard

MER 95502011

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In the words of artist, Geertje Kapteijns: “Saint John’s is an annual festival that is celebrated every year at, among other things, free schools.  It is seen as the festival of light and warmth, inner growth.  That which germinated in Spring now comes to fruition in nature and in ourselves.  Nature reaches its peak.  Nature's vigour flares up once more before the days get shorter again.  It is the time of midsummer.  We are awake and connected to the earth.  Be inspired by life and the warmth around you, without losing yourself.

At the Saint John’s Feast, there is a picnic, flower wreaths are braided in the hair, circle games are played, songs are sung, and a large fire is lit.  The older children jump in pairs over the fire while the little ones bake sandwiches over coals.  At this annual celebration I wanted to quite literally jump over the fire and visualize the energy that comes with it; especially for the first graders, this is an event that is looked forward to all year round and that courage is also gathered.  I wanted to show that 'gathering courage' and the encouragement of all present.  The fire flowers are a find that arose during the drawing; suddenly the growth and blooming forces of nature had come together with the most recognizable aspect of this festival of light and warmth.”

Geertje Kapteijns (1980) is a visual artist, living in Dordrecht, Netherlands.  When her children went to a Waldorf school, she was introduced to the way in which the seasons and annual festivals are celebrated and how children are able to be children during childhood.  This has proved to be a huge source of inspiration.  She started making chalkboard drawings and over time, she released them as cards, as well as her watercolour paintings as cards.  The cards are small works of art that encourage a conscious reflection on a certain time of the year or a certain event and the feeling that goes with that.  Drawings that make you look forward to remembering a beautiful moment.  

There is something magical about a chalkboard drawing.  Because of the black background, you not only apply color when you start drawing, but also light.  Chalk as a material is vulnerable but also very flexible, you can make quick impressions with it, but you can also work with it in detail.  The board drawings are transient, and eventually become again.  However, this also creates space for a new drawing.

Geertje uses Mercurius chalkboard chalk for all her chalkboard drawings

10.5 x 14.8 cm.

Print of a chalkboard drawing on a large quality paper card.

Printed in the Netherlands.