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Bernadette Brefeld

Visual artist Bernadette Brefeld (born 1964 in Haaksbergen) lives and works in Giethoorn, the Netherlands. These last years she has mainly been painting human figures, reduced to their essence. Her work is recognisable and accessible. The spectator effortlessly fills in those details that Brefeld leaves out. It’s not about the specific identity, but about recognising the situation, the interaction and the emotions of the figures portrayed. The fictitious portraits are often depicted with a sense of humour, but always with an attentive eye. Brefeld paints a subjective actuality, which is touching and recognisable. The figures, usually several per painting, are often represented head –on, and are caught up in everyday actions.Their anatomy has been simplified. The important things are, as in the subjective distortions of Medievel art, magnified, whilst redundant elements are simply left out. By using simple hybrids and few details, Brefeld leaves room for interpretation. Communication with the audience is essential, as their reaction forms a part of the painting’s meaning.