I could not believe my ears and eyes: there I was, sitting at the kitchen table with Thé Tjong-Khing! This illustrator was my big hero when I was young and now he told me he liked my work.
As a child, I borrowed the book Kleine Sofie en Lange Wapper from the library over and over again, just to press my nose against the illustrations. Mr Thé (as Khing is his first name and Tjong his generational name) used a crown pen and ink for that book, and his illustrations consisted of thousands of tiny lines. I could lose myself in them for hours.
Because Thé Tjong-Khing will celebrate his 90th birthday in August 2023, a retrospective of his work will be on display at Verwey Museum in Haarlem until then. Mr Thé was also keen to offer a chance to other illustrators, so he chose four, including me. Quite an honour, of course.
This exhibition features some 20 of my original illustrations and a number of sketchbooks. Also on display is a work I created especially in honour of the exhibition, inspired by Kleine Sofie en Lange Wapper, and together with co-exhibitor Emanuel Wiemans, I created a 3-by-4-metre illustration in black and white, which is placed on the wall in the museum’s dining room (see photo below).
The exhibition is called Khingspiration and will be on display until 18 June 2023. More information at the bottom of this page.
When? 7 April until 18 June 2023
Waar? Verwey Museum, Groot Heiligland 47, 2011 EP Haarlem (The Netherlands)
Tijden? Sunday and Monday from 12 – 5 PM, Tuesday until Saturday from 11 – 5 PM
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All text and images © Marloes De Vries