Figurative language in bronze

The artist

“You don’t become an artist, you’re born an artist”.
For pictorial artist Rieke van der Stoep, artistry is a way of life. To her, sculpting is a sublime utterance of what she experiences in her inner self. Even though she chose to become an artist in her later life, as a child she also engaged in artistic pastimes. She worked with textiles, designing and making clothes, acting, painting, drawing, designing decors. Her attention was drawn to graphics and she owned a graphic design company for some years. Artistic dynamic coach and glassblowing training illustrate her many-sided creativity.

Art as form of expression
Rieke brings her inner self outward and reflects this in her statues. Rieke: “Art is a way of communicating, in which the subconscious can be transformed to conscious. Our inner self is our reality.
During the past 20 years, Rieke has mainly made female bronze sculptures.
In her work, she shows how the inner being relates  to ourselves, others and the world around us.
Her figures are in motion or taking a next step, diligently exploring, reaching, searching, balancing and philosophising about life.

Rieke is astonished about life as it is, the natural laws of growth (evolution) of everything that’s alive. To want to understand, to fathom and give shape to this is an unstoppable mainspring. Self-reflection and philosophising on primeval strength, purity, originality of people and what happens in her life inspire her. Rieke feels closely connected to the earth and universe, thinks it’s fantastic to be part of it. She sees life as a voyage of discovery, in which we move forward in a constantly ongoing movement of conscious energy. Rieke says: “There’s a natural impulse that everything that lives and touches each other causes movement (vibration). It’s a constantly ongoing, unending form of energy. Everything is energy. So likewise our thoughts, our way of life and experiences”.

Pictorial language, the circle and geometry
The circle, a recurring theme in her work, represents our thoughts and feelings.
In addition, her own visual language symbols designate our conditioned way of thinking and feeling. Rieke also uses geometric shapes. They are often beautiful to behold and complement the expressiveness of her work. 

Rieke thinks that we as people cannot live without each other. “A human being needs a fellow creature to grow. In addition, life is more fun with each other than without”. Her work is testimony to the many different ways and stages of collaboration.

Exhibitions and commissions
Rieke exhibits at various renowned art galleries and art fairs at home in the Netherlands and abroad. She also accepts commissions from corporates and private individuals.