In my view Jopie Huisman is one of the most interesting Dutch painters in recent history. From his early childhood he draw what he saw around him and touched him. He was an autodidact. As an adult man he earned his living as a salesman of old iron, scrap and rag. He had a passion for the simple and ordinary things of life. He earned his living with collecting and selling what people threw away. Those simple items facinated him too, so he started to paint them. In all his paintings he tried to tell people about the stories behind the objects he painted.
I think it was in the late 70’s or in the beginning of the 80’s when his work got known. Collectors and individuals started offering him lots of money for his work, but he didn’t want to sell it. If he liked someone he gave a painting away. His refusal to sell his work had a lot to do with his spiritual feelings. He thought his talent and inspiration were gifts and he was satisfied with the gift alone. When he really got boared of people offering him enourmous amounts of money for his work, he dicided to give all his drawings and paintings away to a foundation that wanted to start a museum about his work. “Now nobody can buy it and thereby my work became priceless”, he said about that, smiling.
September 29th 2000 he died. The museum exists now and millions of people have visited it allready. (Click on ‘Collectie’ if you want to see some of his work.)
If you want to see more, just google Jopie Huisman and look for images.
One of his beautiful quotations:
“Once I want to make a little painting in such a manner that I almost can’t see anymore that it is painted, it will just be there, nothing more. Something very plain.”