Marie Cecile Thijs, Flowers, Tulips in Vase, 2011Photo: Courtesy Galerie Eduard Planting.

MAASTRICHT.- ‘Museum aan het Vrijthof’ in Maastricht opened a major exhibition of works by Dutch photographer Marie Cécile Thijs during and around the TEFAF Maastricht, the world’s greatest art and antiques fair (13-22 March). Almost 20 years ago, in front of the current museum, she took photographs of the seven yearly ‘Procession of Sacred Relics’ in Maastricht, in the south of Holland. In 2015 she returns for her first retrospective exhibition 'Lust for Light', which can be seen from March 1 until May 31. 


Marie Cecile Thijs, Flowers, Black Jack, 2014Photo: Courtesy Galerie Eduard Planting.

The exhibition ‘Lust for Light' shows different series of photographs made by Marie Cécile Thijs, including White Collar, Food Portraits, Cooks, Horses, Majestic, Human Angels and her previous photographs of the ‘Procession of Sacred Relics’ in Maastricht. 


Marie Cécile Thijs, Horses, Salinero, 2011Photo: Courtesy Galerie Eduard Planting.

Marie Cécile Thijs is an art photographer with a distinctive signature. Her portraits are still lifes and her still lifes become portraits. Topics become characters. They move away from their daily destination, away from time and space. That provides intriguing creations, where elements like tranquility, dynamics and sometimes also humor meet. You would almost forget that cats normally do not wear collars or that chickpeas are usually located on a plate in stead of floating through the air. In her work the unusual is natural.


Marie Cécile Thijs, Successor To The Throne, 2012, Majestic seriesPhoto: Courtesy Galerie Eduard Planting.

Photographs of Marie Cécile Thijs - in terms of light and color - are reminiscent of the Golden Age. The old masters in painting are a major source of inspiration. At the same time her work is totally contemporary. For the serie White Collar (since 2009) she photographed an authentic seventeenth century ruff (also called millstone-ruff) from the collection of the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam, which she later processed in her portraits using digital techniques. 


Marie Cecile Thijs, Girl with White Collar at Table, 2010, White Collar series. Photo: Courtesy Galerie Eduard Planting.


Marie Cecile Thijs, Cat with White Collar V, November 2014, White Collar seriesPhoto: Courtesy Galerie Eduard Planting.

Marie Cécile Thijs gained fame with her autonomous work. In addition, she has portrayed many writers, politicians and artists. The in Southern Limburg born photographer has been fascinated by photography since her youth, but began her career as a lawyer. In her late twenties, she rediscovered the camera and a few years later made the shift to life as a photographer. "For me it was love at second sight," says Marie Cécile Thijs. Meanwhile, she has many exhibitions and has received international awards. In 2014 she won the first prize in the International Photography 


Marie Cécile Thijs, Angel Boy, 2012, Human Angels SeriesPhoto: Courtesy Galerie Eduard Planting.

Masters Cup with her photograph ‘Chickpeas’. In 2010, the photograph ‘Girl with White Collar at Table’ was selected for a photo prize by the curator of the Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago. Her work is included in several museum collections, among those are the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam and Rotterdam Museum. Recently her book 'Characters' with an overview of her work over the past fifteen years was published.


Marie Cécile Thijs, Chick Peas, 2013Food SeriesPhoto: Courtesy Galerie Eduard Planting.


Marie Cécile Thijs, Citrus & Parkiet, 2014, Food Series. Photo: Courtesy Galerie Eduard Planting.