Yesterday I received a small package in the mail. I was awaiting it. Inside there was a map. I can’t show it here, because the location is secret. It is where the Refugio #3 is located. It is “daar”, “there”.

Refugio (Spanish for refuge, shelter, a safe place for pilgrims) is a project in which both the original makers and the participants relate to time and space. A shelter, designed and constructed by an architect, is used as a place to sleep, work, think, be, on a secret location somewhere in the Netherlands.

There has been a Refugio #1 (theme: letting go) and Refugio #2 (theme: holding onto). The third one is about Balance. Refugio #3: There …. at the place where everything falls into place. The journey into the unknown is connected with the personal search for the central things in life, the core, a search for ones’ personal motivations. It moves in-between letting go and hanging onto, in order to find answers. Searching for balance, there …. at the place where everything congregates.

I have been invited to spend a week in the Refugio. To do whatever I want to do as long as I hand in some traces of my time spent there. I don’t know what will happen but I will report here afterwards. I won’t be able to share anything with you that will give information about the location or what the Refugio #3 looks like though. You can see for yourself if you are curious. But only if you book your stay for a night there. More info (and images of Refugio #1 & #2) on this website: www.refugio.nu.

I am going there tomorrow. I will be off-line for a week, back online Monday June 6th and checking my messages for the last time tomorrow morning early. I won’t answer my phone, if you need to get in touch with me urgently you can send me a text message. Or send a carrier pigeon, I am friends with the birds, they know where to find me. Smoke signals might work as well but since I could be in any corner of the Netherlands you would have to make a huge fire somewhere central in the country and it won’t be very environmental friendly. Most things aren’t that urgent anyway. Waiting is good exercise.


My grandmother's table

I spent last Tuesday night first planning to chizzle a text into my grandmother’s table and then painting it instead. The idea was to use the table in my installation in the exhibition Wanderlust as a carrier for the small balls I had collected during a 96 day walk from Amsterdam to Hohe Wand in Austria during which every day I collected everything I could tie together and formed small globes, spheres, ramblers' rosaries. Every ball being a representation of the road on that day, every line a piece of the road, every knot an encounter with a stranger. 

I thought it would be a good idea to place them on the table my grandmother had used during a life in which there had been no time to travel, giving birth to 14 and raising 12 children. In my childhood I sat or played around this table every Sunday, holiday and many other days, together with all my aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews. Now that the table is mine, it is so much smaller than it is in my memories.

I didn’t know it was my grandmother’s last night. She died the day after.

I took the table to De Hallen in Haarlem, it was the first time the table that used to be the centre of her house and became mine after she moved to a home for the elderly, was outside a family setting.
In the end I decided not to use it. I took it home, where it belongs.


A piece of the puzzle (Barcelona)

Last Sunday night I danced and had beautiful conversations with friends. Somewhere in the middle of it, inbetween talking and going home, I found a piece of the puzzle. Another one, a big one. I don't know exactly where it fits in yet but I guess it is an important piece. I love this city and my friends here, but I am getting ready to leave again. It makes me sad like it always does but I guess there are more pieces to be found, other places I love and people I want to see, things I have to do. And anyway, leaving always means you can return. And I will. Soon. To stay and work on putting this puzzle together.