Lang Zal Ze Leven - Family Heirloom

Tracey Roberts © 2015 - 800mm x 800mm


Artist's Statement

This piece is a family heirloom. The man in this picture died recently and his wife liked the idea of having a piece of personal art to enjoy, depicting their life together to then pass on to their children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.

They feature strongly in the centre of this piece as a couple who clearly loved each other very much and this was based on a photo taken years ago that she loved - "That was a really great night."

She chose this colour scheme and was happy with the idea of the two of them being surrounded by all the things they love and enjoy, intermingled with the depictions of meaningful events and places from their lives together.

Their artwork depicts objects of significance representing their work (he was a chef and she was a seamstress), and their interests (he loved tennis, billiards, swimming, crossword puzzles and reading the paper. She sewed, played the accordion and embroidered. She loves flowers and champagne).

It also represents their offspring (the different coloured and sized hearts) as well as many stories and experiences. These include their journey emigrating from Holland to Australia, (landing in fly-infested Darwin), the time when she rode her bike from The Hague to Zwolle to get food, without any rubber tyres ("the Germans stole them"). Sometimes they had to eat tulip bulbs ("they tasted bloody awful"). The artwork also depicts his false teeth which fell out while he was swimming in the inlet at Currumbin.

They both loved their family, the music of Andre Rieu, they played cards regularly and enjoyed the sunny, vibrant colours and atmosphere of Queensland where they lived for many years.

Other elements include a stubborn Taurean bull, the croquettes and souffles they loved to cook, the tulip fields of Holland, the (bulging) suitcase they travelled with when she was (7 months) pregnant, her tapestry, their first new car, one of his favourite sayings and all their children's names embedded in the crossword puzzle. Atlas is carrying the world on his shoulders and birds are flying above the plane, representing freedom.

So there are many memories immortalised in this piece of work which is interesting for subsequent generations (greeting cards and additional prints were created for each member of the family in different sizes too), something very special for the whole family to enjoy.

"Lang Zal Ze Leven" - (long shall they live)


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