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Toi Gallery Blog

Food Art: Ida Frosk's creative kitchen

Food Art: Ida Frosk's creative kitchen

Remember when our parents used to tell us not to play with our food? Well, fortunately, Ida Skivenes- better known as Ida Frosk- didn’t listen. The Oslo based food artist has been playing with food for years and the results are fantastic! Her colorful and amazing creations are fun, tasty, and for the most part, healthy.

We asked her if she would like to recreate one of Toi's artworks and she said yes! How cool is that? Thank you, Ida! Stay tuned to see her pick, coming up soon...

Interview with Ida Frosk

Where did you grow up?

I grew up on a small farm on the west coast of Norway, surrounded by fjords and mountains.

Ida Frosk food art toi art gallery

Were you a good eater when you were a child? What were your favorite foods?

I was actually quite a picky eater when I was a child. My favorites were things that most kids tend to like: spaghetti bolognese and ice cream.

ida frosk toi art gallery food art

How did the idea of food art start?

Mostly by chance, I had seen some food art online and thought it was an interesting idea. I started trying it out by myself and thus discovered my secret talent.

ida frosk toi art gallery food art

ida frosk food art toi art gallery

 What are your favorite ingredients to work in your creations?

For savory: Toast, cream cheese and bell peppers. For sweet: Greek yogurt, berries and seeds. The choices are based on ideal textures, colors and taste.

 Do you consider yourself an artist?

I've eventually come to consider myself a food artist, since this is the only medium I can work in (I'm hopeless at drawing, painting etc).

ida frosk food art toi art gallery

 Who are your favorite artists?

Painters: Hieronymous Bosch, Salvador Dali and Edward Munch.  Photographers/conceptual artists: Gregory Crewdson, Sophie Calle and Miranda July.

ida frosk food art toi art gallery

ida frosk food art toi art gallery

ida frosk food art toi art gallery 

How do you relate the ephemeral aspect of food art with the idea of permanence in traditional art?

I find it to be an interesting contrast, a way to preserve the beauty of food forever while at the same time not wasting the resources (since they are eaten).

ida frosk food art toi art gallery

ida frosk food art toi gallery prints

Do you create your own scenes?

Most often yes, although I do also do some recreations, such as in my Art Toast project.

 

ida frosk food art toi gallery prints

ida frosk food art toi art gallery

ida frosk food art toi art gallery

ida frosk food art toi art gallery

 Do you work with colors and textures?

Very much so. That's the advantage (and sometimes disadvantage) of working with food, the ingredients naturally have a variety of textures and colors. I try to include a wide range of natural colors to keep it visually appealing and provide a range of nutrients too. In terms of texture, it's a combination of what's practical and what looks good. Things that have a firmer texture are often easier to work with.

ida frosk food art toi gallery

ida frosk food art toi gallery

ida frosk food art toi gallery prints

Tell us about a particular follower comment you remember on one of your Instagram pics.

There's no specific comment that sticks out, what I cherish most is receiving photos of food art other people have made, inspired by me, and served successfully to their kids.

You used to work in a complete unrelated field before starting your career as food artists, do you believe in destiny?

Perhaps. I believe that your dreams can sometimes come and catch up with you at least. I was considering to go to photography school when I finished high school but chose the “safe” university option instead.

Do you feel sad when your food art is eaten?

No, because I can always relive it through the photos I've taken. It is made to be eaten.

ida frosk food art toi gallery

ida frosk food art toi gallery

What’s in the future?

 I'm not completely sure. I've been away from food art for a time, while being on maternity leave. Now I'm slowly trying to get back into it, so I don't have a big plan ready yet.

ida frosk food art toi

ida frosk food art toi

ida frosk food art toi

ida frosk toi gallery food art

Is there any artwork in Toi Gallery that you would like to recreate? We would absolute love to see one!

Yes, there are actually many good candidates in Toi Gallery - I love the whimsical, colorful and slightly surreal works here.

(YAY! Ida's recreation of a Toi's artwork is coming up soon!! )

 

                                                                                                                    Karina Miller

 

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Let's hear from the designer: Rosa Beltran

Let's hear from the designer: Rosa Beltran

Rosa Beltran has her own small design firm in the Silver Lake neighborhood of Los Angeles where she designs locally-made, affordable custom furniture. She believes good design should not be out of reach, so she is all about helping to create spaces people truly love to live in. She shares her travels, ideas, and adventures with her adorable son Benicio on her Facebook and Instagram account, her style is fun and open, you can tell she is pretty awesome! 

rosa beltran toi gallery

 

Interview with Rosa Beltran

Where did you grow up? I grew up in the particularly enchanted and creative hot zone of Taos, New Mexico, with ample time spent in Santa Fe where my father was an artist. 

How did you start your career? 

I began in design working for an Architecture firm that focused on green and environmentally sound design, and there I learned a lot about the thought processes and the approach that goes into the design build process. Once I moved to LA I opened my own design firm and also began learning the ropes of designing and manufacturing custom furniture for my clients, and the rest is history!

 rosa beltran toi gallery

Have you always worked in Los Angeles? How would you characterize design in LA?

Well I grew up in New Mexico and then for the first few years of my career I lived and worked in Sun Valley, Idaho, a mountain ski town with a completely different aesthetic than LA. I was also hooked on traveling the world and covered much of Asia, the Middle East, Europe and South America. All of this exposure totally informs my eclectic "layered and collected" design style that I think fits right in with the global vibe of this city. California clients want comfort and ease yes, but they're also generally pretty well exposed to design and don't want anything cookie-cutter or formulaic. I say yes, why shouldn't we all have eminently livable, comfortable spaces that sacrifice nothing in creativity or style!?

 rosa beltran toi gallery

Tell us about the project you’ve enjoyed the most and the most challenging project you worked on.

The beauty of this job is that I'm not just imposing my own aesthetic on my clients, I'm actually listening to their likes and desires and figuring out how to translate those in a really beautiful and cohesive way in their living spaces. It can definitely be a challenge if we start out far apart in our visions, but those are also ultimately the most satisfying projects, once I've figured out how to meld the two and express a client's vision through my own lens. So in a very real sense every project is both the most challenging AND the most rewarding. 

rosa beltran toi gallery

How is your ideal room?

My ideal room would be flooded with natural light. If I'm being choosy I'd pick high ceilings too because there's nothing like working with a voluminous space like that. Bring in furniture that combines functionality and beauty, and art that touches you in some way: either makes you laugh, remember a moment in time, daydream, fantasize ... that's going to be a pretty perfect room because it's about how you FEEL vs how others feel or how you THINK you should feel. 

rosa beltran toi gallery

rosa beltran toi gallery

What is your favorite color palette? 

Ooh that's a hard one because I can totally get down with white walls with multi-layered neutrals like beige, black grey, ivory, plus warm cognac wood or leather tones. That's one of my faves.  But colorful palettes excite me too!  Blues, greens, and pinks tend to be my favorites. Check out color combos that are opposite each other on the color wheel like blue and orange ... opposites will always pair well together. 

What pieces would you arrange with this artwork by Beatrice Cerocci?

beatriz cerocci toi gallery

http://bit.ly/2pJeLID

The cool color palette of the piece would look great paired with warm wood tones and perhaps accents of black. Design is all about contrast, and I love how the overall muted vibe of this composition contrasts with the scattered black accents of the subjects' clothing and hair. That gives the piece a really great composition, I think. 

 rosa beltran toi gallery

Charles Eames said: “The details are not the details. They make the design.” What do you think?

Absolutely, in fact I've used that quote often!  The details are integral to every space I design. I can curate all the big pieces like great furniture, rug, etc, but without that final layer of art and accessories it will fall completely flat.  It's the details that make a room come together and truly sing. 

rosa beltran toi gallery

rosa beltran toi gallery

rosa beltran toi gallery

How do you design a gallery wall? Do you combine colors, shapes, frames?

There are so many different ways to create a gallery wall! That said, here are some tips that I generally adhere to:-include at least a few pieces with really wide matts. The negative space will help let the gallery wall "breathe."

-if it's a more organic grouping of frames,  vary the size and orientation, mixing vertical with horizontal and larger with smaller. The space between frames needn't be exactly the same as long as the whole composition looks somewhat balanced. 

-if I'm framing many prints of similar subject matter I like creating a grid pattern where the frames are exactly equidistant and lined up with each other. 

 -if you're mixing frame finishes then pick 2 or 3 and be sure to balance the collection. I.e. don't just stick one gold frame in a grouping of all black frames...scatter at least 3 throughout instead. 

I'd mix together different original artworks with different frames, but keep the style of the artwork similar. If you are doing a gallery wall exclusively featuring photography, then it is best to make sure that the photographs have similar tones so that they compliment each other even if the subject matter is varied.

 

rosa beltran toi gallery

What is your favorite design icon of all time?

How about Picasso!? Talk about the ability to reinvent his creativity again and again! From his simplest sketches to his cubist masterpieces, he never stopped pushing and experimenting, which is a quality I really admire in an artist. 

picasso toi gallery prints

picasso toi gallery

 

What project would you like to do if you could choose any?

I would LOVE to rework a vintage home up in the Ojai Valley area. That mix of Spanish revival and old California ranch is so quintessentially SoCal, and obviously the stunning backdrop of mountains, valleys, and orange groves doesn't hurt it any. 

rosa beltran toi gallery

rosa beltran toi gallery

 

What is the meaning of home?

It's all about feeling comfortable and at peace in your space. We live in such a fast-paced world and we've all got such full plates all the time! Home should feel like a sanctuary from all that, where you go to relax, recharge, and get inspired again.                                                                                    

rosa beltran toi gallery

                                                                                                           Karina Miller

 

 

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Artists in Motion. Camilla Engman: A nurse, a singer and a princess with long hair

Artists in Motion. Camilla Engman: A nurse, a singer and a princess with long hair

Interview with Camilla Engman 

Swedish artist Camilla Engman’s work is fascinating, beautiful and mysterious. There is something very moving about her color palette of yellows, greys and neutral tones, but also her dreamlike scenarios where animals and humans share enigmatic stories. In this interview, she talks about her experience of being an artist, and all the possibly different lives left behind in her journey.

camilla engman toi art gallery prints 

Where did you grow up? How was your childhood like?

I grew up in Trollhättan, a small town in Sweden. I think my childhood were pretty average. 

camilla engman toi art gallery

Are there other artists in your family?

Not at all. My mother was cleaning at a school and my father repaired cars. None of them were creative as far as I remember. 

When did you start drawing?

I don’t remember but at least when I was 4 years old. I have a memory of sitting on the floor with markers and a glass of water, since some of them had dried.

In a wonderful interview by Susannah Conway you said that, when you were a child, you wanted to be different things depending on your age: a nurse called María, a teacher called Eva, a princess called Rose-Marie, Agneta - the Abba singer-, and also wanted to have long hair (but your mom used to cut it short) and ride a horse to school. Do you think your actual profession allows you, in a way, to be all those things? Which one do you regret not becoming the most?

I still think it would be cool to be able to ride a horse to work! I think we all are those things, each and one of us. In a dream, in a thought or in reality. We have all been the singer of a famous band, the prettiest girl or a good person we admired. 

camilla engman toi art gallery

camilla egnman toi gallery

Before becoming an artist, you worked as a hairdresser assistant, cleaning trains and planes at night, in a car factory, and also had three attempts to get into art school before you actually got in. Can we say that persistence is one of your strong qualities? What would you say to young artists that are struggling to find their way?

When you put it like that it sure sound that way. But I don’t think so. Maybe even the opposite. I’ve never been determined to be anything, but during all this it made me clear that I didn’t want to work at the car factory or anything like it. I knew I wanted to work with something that made me want to go to work and not crying. I wasn’t sure I was an artist, of any kind. But making pictures was what I was best at. I’m not sure at this at all but it might be so that it could have been anything creative.

Being an artist is, for most of us, being poor. You better know that. You’ll have to cherish time and freedom more than money. I am happy almost everyday I go to my studio and I do it even when I don’t have to. There is a community but is mostly pretty lonely work. I also think, for me, it is better to have a completely different place to work and keep the fun in creating. 

camilla engnman toi art gallery

camilla engman toi art gallery

For some artists is hard to work in shared projects, but you collaborated in several projects with other artists, including the creation of Studio violet with Elizabeth Duncan. What have your learned/liked from working closely with colleagues?

Collaborations can be heaven and hell. You’ll have to choose your partner carefully. I’ve been lucky. A good thing with working with others are that you will have to define yourself, where in this can I bend and not. What is my soul. Another thing is that you learn new things and if you are lucky it will take you to new places. When collaborations work it is the best thing ever! When collaborations work at its best it makes you even better 1+1=3.

camilla egnman toi art gallery blog and prints

camilla egnman toi art gallery prints for sale

Your little cutie dog Morran is part of your work and blog, as a companion and inspiration. How/when did you get her? Why did you choose her name? Tell us about her personality.

I think I got Morran in 1999. She got old and sick and is dead now. Her name is the sound dogs do (in Swedish), growling. As they say - be careful with what you name your dog. She was the reason I started blogging in early 2000. I was the webmaster for a website on her breed, nothing new ever happened there. So I started to upload two photos of Morran’s day every day. And that transformed in my own blog with Morran as my alter ego. There were many sad people around the world when she died. I’m not still sure what it was that made people like Morran so much, maybe it was my love for her that shone through. The funny thing is that Morran didn’t like people very much. 

camilla egnman toi art gallery prints

Do you watch TV?

I watch TV a lot and has always done. I grew up in front of a TV. The best part of the week was when the whole family was gathered in front of the TV on Friday evening. I love watching TV. When you see a movie you just see that movie, but when you are watching TV you can end up seeing something that you didn’t plan, something that will teach you something, something that will start a new way of thinking, a new interest. I hate reality shows though.

Your studio is in a building that used to be an Epidemic Hospital and now is called Epidemic Art. It’s funded by a non-profit organization that provides studio facilities for more that 100 artists. How is it to be part in such a rich community? Do you have any interesting anecdotes to share with us?

It is in an area that was an Epidemic Hospital before. It is sure a great place! As I said before, being an artist is mostly a lonely work, but being at a place with all these people makes it less lonely indeed. Also if you want to try something new or need help with anything it is easy to ask your neighbor artist. Here is a restaurant/cafe’ and we have different kinds of galleries. Sometimes there are workshops and artist talks. Right now I can’t come up with any anecdotes at all… but I’m sure there has to be many. This place started for over 25 years ago,  and a place full of creative people - you can just imagine.

camilla egnman toi gallery

camilla egnman toi gallery

You’ve referred to your work with collections as “therapeutic art”, could you tell us about this? Is it related to a particular emotional state?

I guess it is that old collector state of mind that most people have. I also like how seemingly meaningless items suddenly gets important. Something that was trash two seconds ago now you look at it again and you see the shape, color and the structure and you see its beauty. There is also something therapeutic in arranging things, like a puzzle you have to solve.

camilla egnman toi gallery

camilla egnman toi gallery

 

Your work seems to have elements of surrealist painting, especially in relation with dreams and the unconscious, tell us about this.

It is like a parallel world. Just like this one, but a bit twisted. Just as twisted as this one but maybe in another direction. I don’t understand them fully myself. Especially not when I make them, it gets clearer after a while.

camilla egnman toi gallery

camilla egnman toi gallery

camilla egnman toi gallery

 

How do you see the role of women artists today?

Maybe I should, but I don’t think about that at all. I know I am a woman artist but I would like to be an artist. I am a pink, middle aged, tall, woman from Sweden. I know this defines me. But I am also a human on planet earth. Just as the rest of you.

camilla egnman toi gallery

You work with paper, painting, ceramics, installations, children books… is there anything you haven’t done yet that you would like to try?

I’d like to try out the film media a bit more! That will be the next :-)

camilla egnman toi gallery

camilla egnman toi gallery

You said that if you could choose another profession it might be “dog psychologist”, what do you think Morran would had to talked about in her sessions?

I think Morran was pretty happy. Of course she would have been even happier if we had l lived outside the city so that she could have done what she was supposed to, keeping an eye on strangers and rats. Maybe she would have tried to convinced me to move to the country side.

camilla egnman toi gallery

vamilla egnman toi gallery

Did you knit her sweaters?

Yes I did and she absolutely hated them.

I absolutely love your poster for the Gothenburg Film Festival, what inspired you in that particular work?

I had been to the Film Festival since I was a teenager. I was thinking about the feeling it gives me. Meeting different cultures, seeing films you would never been able to see otherwise. The magic in film, that anything can happen. I also thought about those old black and white movies with smoking beautiful women. And in the end that was what stayed. The possibility to be someone else for a while.

camilla egnman toi gallery

Name two of your favorite books

I haven’t read much lately. But I like Haruki Murakami a lot, pick any two.

Why should we have art at home?

Yes, why should we? I think having things around you that means something for you, that you like and don’t want to loose, that is important. It doesn’t have to be art. Stop by meaningless things just because buying is fun. Make your things count.

Imagine a world without art. That would be a sad and dangerous place!

camilla egnman toi gallery 

camilla egnman toi gallery

Do you wear your hair long now?

Yes I do. I cut my hair myself a month ago, it was a disaster! I’m going to a hairdresser tomorrow. Looking forward to it.

                                                                                                     Karina Miller

 

camilla egnman toi gallery 

camilla egnman toi gallery

 

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Artists in Motion: The meaningful art of Joanna Concejo

Artists in Motion: The meaningful art of Joanna Concejo

Joanna’s work is like a pebble thrown in the water: its splash reverberates in circles of emotion and thoughts that linger. How does she achieve this magic? There is an element of mystery, perhaps even to herself; it seems that when she makes art, she surrenders to her own creative powers; she creates art that invites us, the viewers, to enter a portal and get transported to her remarkable world.

meaningful art joanna concejo toi gallery 

Interview with Joanna Concejo

1.What was it like growing up in Poland? 

Growing up in the Polish countryside was wonderful! Of course it was a bit difficult, hard and at times brutal, life in the countryside, but I think I couldn’t had have a better childhood. Being outdoors all the time, in contact with nature, animals, walking in fields and forests, gathering mushrooms, blueberries ... that's just what I’ve always adored!

My wonderful grandmother told me amazing stories, she was always singing, knitting, embroidering ...

 

joanna concejo meaningful art toi gallery

 

meaningful art joanna concejo toi gallery

 

2.When did you decide you wanted to draw?

I feel like I've always drawn. At first, of course, it was like all children. But when I was 14 or 15 I thought I wanted to do it seriously and decided to attend school to learn other techniques, meet people etc. ...

the meaningful art of joanna concejo toi gallery

3.Do you keep a favorite drawing from when you were a child?

No, I don’t not keep anything from my childhood, the oldest drawing, or rather painting, that I still have now, it’s from when I was 14 years old. It is a painting a little "kitsch", a sunset at the seaside.

4. What kind of child were you?

I was a very obedient child, I loved school, I did not do stupid things, I did not cause problems to adults. I was very wise! And rather silent.

the meaningful art of joanna concejo toi gallery

the meaningful art of joanna concejo toi gallery

5. What inspires you?

 Inspiration is not something I seek, it is more a state of availability in life, an openness to things that happen to me, to the encounters I have, to images, landscapes, to everything I can see, hear, touch ...

meaningful art joanna concejo toi gallery

meaningful art joanna concejo toi gallery

 6.Where do you work? How is your work routine?

I work in a small studio. I go there in the morning, I make coffee and I draw. I drink a lot of coffee ... I'm all alone there. I do not listen to music, I do not need it. I like the silence. I take a lunch break around noon, then I go back to work. And it's like that until 5 pm ... I work only with daylight, I do not see very well with artificial light. So my days are longer in summer and shorter in winter. The weekend in general I do not work. I spend time with my family.

7.Your work is extremely poetic, it seems to me if your drawings are poems written in images. Do you read poetry? Can you share a poem with us? 

Yes, I read poetry, but not much. I do not have any favorite poems. I read much more prose. I read a little bit of everything. But my favorite writer is Andrzej Stasiuk. I love all his books. I feel very close to what he writes. I also like Henry D. Thoreau. I like to read about his walks in nature, and these thoughts ...

8. You wrote a beautiful text published on Brightness Magazine, in which you describe the relationship your work has with paper and time; You mentioned the idea of ​​continuity, could you explain this idea and give us an example of a particular work that shows it?

I have a great affection for paper that has already lived, that has grown old, which bears on it the traces of the passage of time, spots, fragments of the writings etc….I like to work with papers like that. I feel like I'm part of their story, continuing it. What I also like in drawing is the aspect of the passage of time in the process of drawing, because it takes time. For when I work on a drawing for several days, it happens alongside many things at the same time. I can think of a lot of things, I can interrupt to do the dishes, to clean the house, to look at the sky, trees, feed the family, receive good or bad news by telephone ... And all this influences and lives in drawing ... This slowness is necessary to me, I need to be attentive enough to both the drawing and all the things I do next.

meaningful art joanna concejo toi art gallery

meaningful art joanna concejo toi gallery

meaningful art joanna concejo toi gallery

9.What is the relationship between Red Riding Hood and the Wolf?

Oh, of course it's a love affair! An impossible love! Unique, and one that will change their lives. Unfortunately this story cannot finish well. For the Wolf and the forest share a single nature. He is Wolf and cannot change what he is. And Little Red Riding Hood and the village: she cannot change what she is, either. But I think that her encounter with the Wolf transforms her, makes her grow. The girl will never be the same again.

A few things brought them together, they live beautiful story of friendship, play, love, but they cannot stay together ...

meaningful art joanna concejo toi gallery

meaningful art joanna concejo toi gallery

meaningful art joanna concejo toi gallery

meaningful art joanna concejo toi gallery

10.The characters you draw are usually alone or they seem alone, even if they are in a group. There is an element of the unconscious that appears to be uninhabited your drawings. Something that's there and it's not there. A play between the visible and the non-visible. Tell us about that.

 I do not know what more to say. I'm sorry. I think that if I could speak better, write, I would stop drawing and I would start writing books ... And to return to the things I draw, to the characters ... I am often surprised myself of what I can do. It is often very unconscious. I just know, that it must be like that. I do not need to explain to myself everything that appears under my hand. The problem begins when it is necessary to explain it to others ... When I draw, I let myself lead by the intelligence of my hand. I "think" through the gesture of the hand. And I try to stay attentive to my own work, watch it....I never know where the drawing will take me. So, yes, there is a lot of that, visible, invisible ... but I cannot explain it in words. That's why I draw.

meaningful art joanna concejo toi gallery

 11.How do you work with/ think about color?

I have no clear idea of ​​color. It appears a little by surprise ...

As a child, when I lived with my grandparents in the country, I did not have colored pencils to draw. I had only one carpenter's pencil from my grandfather and a gray pencil. So in a very natural way, if I think of the drawing, I think of the gray graphite pencil. And that's how I do it. Color requires effort. And when I was little, the only colorful things were my grandmother's woolen threads, fabrics and threads to embroider ... I loved it all. My grandmother knitted many wool flowers ... and then, now, the color appears mostly in flowers, nature ...

But I have not yet fully understood the mystery of color ...

 12.What is your favorite book / movie?

 My favorite film is "Stalker" by Andrei Tarkovski, and the book ... I think it's "On the Road to Babadag" by Andrzej Stasiuk.

13.What is the girl of "Breakfast" thinking?

 I do not know. She is just there, present, sitting at this "mountain" of her table. I like very much not formulating exact thoughts. I like the blur, the wandering of confused thought. The girl is there, waiting for her day ...

meaningful art joanna concejo toi gallery

 14.Why should we have art at home?

 I do not know how to answer that kind of question. It depends on everyone, every person feels differently. As far as I'm concerned, I have it at my place and it's quite natural. I do not even ask myself the question "Why?"

15.What are your projects for the future?

Well, I have several book projects to do. I'm always drawing, thinking about telling things through pictures. But I do not know exactly. Maybe I would do something else, maybe I'd build a house ... We'll see ...

meaningful art joanna concejo toi gallery

meaningful art joanna concejo toi gallery

 meaningful art joanna consejo toi gallery

meaningful art joanna concejo toi gallery

joanna concejo meaningful art toi gallery

meaningful art toi gallery joanna concejo 

                                                                                                            Karina Miller

 

 

 

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Artists in Motion: Lieke van der Vorst "I learned so many things: from being alone and overcome my fears, to how lovely people are to strangers"

Artists in Motion: Lieke van der Vorst

Dutch artist Lieke van der Vorst was born in Kaatsheuvel, a village between Tilburg and ’s-Hertogenbosch in the southern part of the Netherlands. She started her blog and studio Liekeland, in 2011.

In her work she combines everyday life with dreamlike scenes: a dinner table with people and wild animals, a garden with a girl and a bear planting together, meaningful and beautiful images that transport us to a whimsical land.

Perhaps her drawings are reflections of how Lieke would like the world to be: a place where we are all connected with nature, where every living thing can find a place at our table and people and nature live in harmony.

Lieke's work is printed on Arctic Paper from Sweden, with only a minimum amount of water and energy, Arctic Paper produces ecological and FSC certified types of paper.

liekeland animals toi art gallery

liekeland prints toi art gallery

Interview with Lieke van der Vorst

Where did you grow up? How was your childhood like?

I grew up in a little village in the South of the Netherlands, Kaatsheuvel. Where I lived with my parents and dog. I had a very great childhood, with lots of holidays to the South of France, where we did camping close to the sea or in the mountains. I was always drawing and for every birthday I've got pencils or my parents let me choose anything from the art-supply-shop.

Liekeland Like van der Vorst toi art gallery prints

Are your parents artists?

No, my dad works with printers and my mother is a hairstylist. But they are both creative and always supported me.

Liekeland Lieke van der Vorst Toi art gallery prints

Liekeland Lieke van der Vorst Toi art gallery

When did you realize you wanted to be an artist?

I never really did.  When I was young I wanted to do ‘something creative’ so my teacher told me I should study graphic design. While I was studying graphic design I figured out I wanted to work with my hands instead of the computer. So I starting drawing a lot. When I was in the art academy I loved making big illustrations and that’s where I started using ballpoint pencils.

Do you like to cook?

Yes I really love to cook, it’s one of my favorite things to do. I love to make Indian and Thai curry’s, salads and try lots of new recipes from cookbooks.

lieke van der vorst toi art gallery prints

lieke van der vorst liekeland toi art gallery

Who/what inspires you?

Lots of things, I think just the daily routines, working in the garden and cooking. Also going to the market, drinking tea with friends, and having picnics in the park. I love good documentaries and books about healthy food, maybe when I am not  illustrating I would do something creative with food. I also love good cookbooks and cooking shows.

liekeland lieke van der vorst toi art gallery

liekeland lieke van der vorst toi art gallery

Nature is very important in your work, tell us about that.

I believe nature is everything, everything is connected and in harmony. People should trust it more; like if you would try to listen to your body and eat no human-made-food, your body will tell you what it needs.

Lieke Liekeland Toi art gallery prints

liekeland lieke van der vorst toi art gallery nature woods

Recently you traveled around parts of the Maldives, India, Nepal, Malaysia, Thailand, South Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, Indonesia and the United Arab Emirates, how this influenced your work and what did you learn from these travels?

I learned so many things, from being alone and overcome my fears, to how lovely people are to strangers who are lost. We met so many wonderful people, eat great food and saw wonderful nature. I was really looking for inspiration and sometimes I found it, but when I look back at the adventure I think I learned more about myself than I have found inspiration for new work.

Liekeland Lieke van der vorst toi art gallery prints

lieke liekeland toi art gallery prints

You contributed with your work to the book “Goof Night Stories for Rebel Girls” about Lakshmi Bai, queen and warrior of India. In this book stories about other heroic women are illustrated by 60 female artists, from every corner of the globe. Tell us how would your like your illustrations to inspire young girls.

That would be so great, yes! The book is about strong independent women, so it’s a book with lots of inspiration and motivation. In every illustration I try to tell a little story or communicate a thought, sometimes it’s very clearly visible and sometimes not. But to inspire young girls to start illustrating, or to eat more healthy from nature, or to be an independent woman is wonderful.

Where is home?

At this moment home is in Eindhoven, a city in the Netherlands. I live together with a very good friend, cooking good meals every evening.

Lieke van der vorst toi art gallery prints

Where do you work and how is your work routine?

I work in a studio about half hour bicycle ride from my home. It’s in a old school building with lots of light coming in. Every morning I start working in my studio between 9 and 10, then I first answer my emails, making some packages if I got orders and then I start illustrating. At 1:00 I make lunch, mostly salads, and then work until 6:00 pm.  The post office closes at 6:30, so then I ship out some packages and go home.

lieke van der vorst toi art gallery prints

 

What kind of music do you like?

From punk, electro, country and metal, to Cuban and Spanish music. Like Restavrant and Manu Chao.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fx4yslRMyGk

Name three of your favorite books.

- Awareness from Osho: https://www.bol.com/nl/p/awareness/1001004001584987/

- toxic free from Julia Kang:

https://www.bol.com/nl/p/100-gifvrij/1001004011549207/

- The green kitchen cookbooks

http://www.greenkitchenstories.com/

Your illustrations seem to be very connected with your life experiences, is there a particular message you would like to convey?

That people should start listen, to themselves, their bodies and nature. It would be so nice if we can all live together without hurting any living thing.

liekeland toi art gallery prints

liekeland toi art gallery prints

What are your projects for the future?

I am now working on some new prints, also inspired by all the travel I did last year.

Why is important to have art at home?

I got a painting from one of my interns, it’s a table with flowers on it and some cigarettes. I traded it with her and it was one of my first things I got in my new house when I got home from the trip.

liekeland lieke van der vorst toi art gallery prints

Where do you want to travel next?

South America, I would love to visit Mexico and eat lots of beans, corn and avocados!

liekeland postcards toi art gallery

liekeland postcards toi art gallery

liekeland postcards toi art gallery

 

                                                                                                                  Karina Miller 

 

 

 

 

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Artists in Motion: Cinta Arribas

Artists in Motion: Cinta Arribas

Cinta studied Fine Arts at Salamanca and completed her education in Kassel (Germany). Now she lives in Madrid, where she works as a freelance illustrator.

 Among her publishing projects is Bababum, a series of activity books for kids, or Hijos de Fruta, a colorable fanzine "for kids who enjoy farts and burps championships". 

Cofounder of the Crispis studio in Madrid, she publishes fanzines and works on projects such as Bababum.

 For several years she illustrated articles in the Economy and Society section of the Eco magazine, in Galicia and she also coordinates the illustration workshop for children, Taller de dinosaurios

Cinta’s work focuses on people, she likes to imagine stories inspired by different characters. Her work is intense, colorful and expressive; it plays with a subtle sense of humor that highlights the fact that life should always be a little fun.

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We Love Art

We Love Art

At Toi, we think art is the best present you can give someone you love.... so, in anticipation of Valentine's Day, we asked Toi's artists about the connection between art and love. 

They illustrated their answers, and we love what they did. You will too! 

Eleonora Arroyo

How risky to talk about love without sounding cheesy! Especially when talking about art and love. The most important thing for me is to express a feeling or an idea through my work. When I illustrate, I translate that idea or emotion to a visual language. I allow the image take charge. Form, color, composition, everything has to communicate, to express a feeling.

I’m not sure what is the best present for someone we love. But I’m certain art is one of the best possible presents. What a joy is to choose an artwork, to think of how this would please this person, and how this piece will be in their life forever.

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The Meaning of Meaningful

The Meaning of Meaningful

I find the dictionary definition of meaningful, (and its synonyms significant, important, valid) very similar to some aspects of art.

Meaningful is described as “communicating something that is not directly expressed” the same way that art transmits feelings or, as Leo Tolstoy put it, “[in art] the receiver enters a kind of relationship.”

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Artists in Motion. Anne Baier: "I think to surround yourself with beautiful things has an impact on the way you feel."

Artists in Motion. Anne Baier:

Anne Baier grew up in the North of Germany. She has studied Visual Communication at the Bauhaus University Weimar and at École Supérieure des beaux-arts de Toulouse. Since 2013, she works as a freelance illustrator in her studio in Potsdam, Berlin. Her illustrations have been published in several magazines and newspapers in Germany, Switzerland, Austria and England. She also works for publishers and clients in the field of graphic and editorial design. Anne loves using graphite pencils and doing all kinds of prints. Her illustrations are inspired by nature, everyday life and music and have a strong sense for abstraction and textures.

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Artists in Motion: Catarina Sobral "Literature creates readers, visual arts create the possibility of reading and thinking through images... All those types of literacy are equally important."

Artists in Motion: Catarina Sobral

Born in Portugal in 1985, Catarina Sobral is a published author and illustrator. After studying Graphic Design, she graduated in Illustration in 2012. Her illustrations are a regular presence in editorial, album covers and posters, and she has ten books published in eleven different languages. Her work has been exhibited both in solo and group shows in many places around the world and recognized by the Bologna Children’s Book Fair, the Portuguese National Illustration Award, the Portuguese Authors’ Society, the White Ravens catalogue and the 3x3 magazine.

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