This graphite pencil drawing Darja Collin – 20-09-22 follows Art Deco Nude – 16-09-22. Still Deco-ish but I decided to grant her a series of her own. Years ago Hans, a student of mine, showed me her picture. It was an unbelievable photo of her in a smashing overstretched position, leaning backwards. It was the incentive to do a first drawing that became Roundism – 10-09-14. It was followed by Sans Titre – 05-05-17 a couple years later. This one I rendered rather cubistic in order to have it match the Art Deco Nude series. Besides that, the previous two drawing of her I already did roundistically.
Darja never left my mind ever since and finally I got to read her life story. An incredible tale I must say. She was a ballet dancer and married to Jan Slauerhoff, if only for 5 tumultous years. Modern for her time she also was know to be the first celebrity with star airs. So there she is, an incredible woman of prickly character but also an eye-charmer, in and out of relationships. Then Europe found itself on the eve of World War II and she was on tour at the Côte d’Azur. She managed to escape through Africa to the Dutch East-Indies. She also escaped Japanese concentration camp by fleeing on a boat to Australia in 142 where she performed for the troops. A story to make a movie of, I think.
One of her lovers, poet A. Den Doolaard, described as an elusive natural phenomenon that can’t be grasped like water. Not for me though. I got hold of her resemblance quite easy. Maybe because I was motivated to capture her beauty and her star airs allowed me to do. On the reference picture there was an unattractive white negative space to the left. I decided to make that one dark too, forcing the viewer to focus only on her side view.
Pitt Graphite Matt pencil (Faber-Castell) drawing on Hahnenmühle paper (24 x 31 x 0.1 cm)
Artist: Corné Akkers
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