Anne-Marie Abcouwer
* Utrecht, the Netherlands


Inspiration and creative process

My work is about human contacts or in fact the absence of those. Because of the many sources of information, such as television and the Internet , people withdraw into their own domains and as a result, a fragmented society develops, in which individuals get isolated and in which individuals live within their own schemes in different spaces. Living with and near each other in an (urban) landscape is changing rapidly under the influence of these media. More and more information can reach us through the Internet and television, but it leads to distance and fewer physical contacts between people. My experience in television work has resulted in a fascination with the question of how people relate to each other under the influence of television. Moreover, I wonder whether or not the environment perceived by the senses is the true environment. Very often, different spaces are visible in my work. These spaces are separated from each other by lines or tubes. Of the originally painted layers only small pieces remain visible or they disappear altogether. This is how the layered images reflect human contacts. The lines symbolize what human contacts can be like, how superficial, or how absent. This results in a deeply layered image in which the foreground and background are isolated . The large-sized landscapes are impressions of an urban or a rural landscape. Reality seems present, but is not, and people, essential for contact, are absent.


Abcouwer, visual artist, started her career as a make-up artist in the theatre. Later she set up her own company in this field carrying out private orders and cooperating in commercials and films for the cinema and television. Besides, she worked with renowned photographers, among whom Paul Huf.

During her years as a make-up artist for television, Abcouwer worked with international celebrities, such as Julio Iglesias, Cliff Richard, Joe Cocker, Roger Moore, Patrick Bruel and Charles Aznavour and many famous Dutch people, like Mies Bouwman, Ivo Niehe, Barend en van Dorp and Nelleke van der Krogt. Interestingly, she contributed to some television adaptations of Italian operas.

In 2006 Abcouwer decided to stop working as a make-up artist and dedicated herself entirely to becoming a visual artist. In June 2009 she graduated from the Utrecht School of Arts ("Hogeschool voor de Kunsten Utrecht"), the Netherlands, as a Bachelor of Fine Art (With Honour).


. Diploma Bachelor of Fine Art, With Honour, (2009)
. Bachelor of Fine Art, Utrecht School of the Arts (HKU)(2005-2009)
. Visual arts, Utrecht School of the Arts (HKU)(2004)
. Experimental painting, Leo Dekker, Driebergen
. Make-up artist


. 1999- now: Visual artist
. 1985-1994: Make-up artist teacher
. 1974-2006: Make-up artist (theatre, photography, cinema, television)

Civil state

Married, one daughter