What would be the title of your semi-fictional autobiography and how would it end?
It would be titled Vera Geluck.
Ron Bernstein, the head of the wood workshop at the Jan van Eyck Academie, made an alternative door sign for me in 2017, when I was a resident there. Instead of Vera Gulikers, he wrote Vera Geluck, good luck Friday on it (the ‘Is still happy and uncontrolled’ was added later that year). He made the sign for me the week before the award ceremony of the Royal Award for Modern Painting, to wish me good luck. The name is a cross-over between my last name and Guus Geluk, the comic figure who’s always lucky. The sign still has a prominent spot in my studio, it became like a talisman to me. I would love to use it as a title for a book, and the image as a cover.
Are there specific subjects or themes you return to regularly in your work? If so, what are they and do you know why?
Feminism, the history of painting, fragments from daily life, and happy accidents during working.
These themes and subjects are very close to me in my personal and professional life. I like to read feminist texts, follow a lot of podcasts, politics, literature, and read about old painting techniques and contemporary painters. Sometimes something goes wrong in the studio, which at first seems like a huge drama, but at a second glance can be a solution to a painterly problem I couldn’t seem to figure out. It’s always a mix of the personal and professional which gets me started.
A few years ago I dropped a bucket of latex on the road by accident. At first, it seemed like a problem, mainly because of the cars and bikes that might drive through it. But a lot of people came to help me. We scooped it off the road, cleaned it, and covered it with sand. There were some wonderful painterly gestures in this moment, by a whole bunch of different people. And, the contrast between the latex paint and the asphalt road is one of the biggest painterly contrasts you can get. I, later on, used various aspects of this happy accident in different ways in an installation I made at that time.
What is the most timeless song ever made and what makes it timeless?
Crystal Telephone by Terry Durham (Baroque pop/poetry)
I love his tunes, lyrics and he’s like a storyteller on record. To me, it expresses something eternal, and timeless because of its relaxedness, dreaminess, and the visual images it evokes.
“And golden is the back of the tiger, and still soft
And the flames in my mind write in the sky: the question, the question remains the answer”
Regardless of what time I would live in, I think it would be impossible for me not to relate to this record.