Unfolding Entities, Realms, Perspectives, Transformations and Resonances...

Friday, January 6, 2017

2016 Harvest

Paintings made in 2016 by Olivier Hijmans
2016 Harvest of paintings...

2016 has been a reasonably productive year for me.. exploring new entities and realms, figures and spaces... enabling me to share 20 new canvases with you in a new gallery on my site. Many are for sale on Saatchiart. Both the originals and as print on demand. So please enjoy and feel free to share!

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Reaching for the stars

La Palma Observatory

Last May I made a short trip to the beautiful island of La Palma. This green and peaceful pearl in the Atlantic is home to the largest astronomical observatory in Europe. It took our rented Citro├źn Cactus half a tank of gas in first gear to get to the mountaintop where IAC's huge telescopes are silently witnessing the spectacle of outer space. So one does wonder how they managed to lift all those heavy and sensitive optical high-tech gadgets to the rim of the crater of Roque de los Muchachos.

Getting there, taking in the spectacular panoramas, I felt very satisfied and overwhelmed... It was one of these things on my bucket list: To see a huge astronomical facility on top of a mountain. Ever since early childhood, I've had a clear predilection for all things outer space, so to me this trip felt a bit like coming home. Especially because my 4 year old son was standing next to me, sharing the experience.

Also from early childhood on, all my artistic expressions have had some sort of 'cosmic' or 'outer space' aspect to them. And that is something I am still pursuing...

Especially at a place like that, on a mountain top from where Humanity watches the cosmos, one is reminded of the fundamental oneness or inseparability of all life and phenomena, and the magic of it all... And that is more and more the intentional core message of everything I create through music, painting, photography or what have you...

Let's create a wonderful, peaceful 2017 and carefully observe the infinite!

Friday, December 9, 2016

Deep Sea Patience

abstract painting by Olivier Hijmans
Deep Sea Patience, 50 x 50 cm acrylic on panel, © Olivier Hijmans 2009

"The risk of movement
Colors protect each other
Until that moment"

There was a time when I used to write a Haiku (or pseudo Haiku) with every new painting. This Painting dates back to 2009, a golden oldie indeed.

Titled 'Deep Sea Patience', this work reveals a scene that is both dynamic and tranquil at the same time. It is like a very specific puzzle that might drastically fall apart when one of its individual elements is removed.

Or, more anecdotally, you can imagine a slightly frightened fish in the upper center of the picture, trying to hide behind a colorful coral and other sea creatures. The art of camouflage and natural harmony at the same time. But what if it moves..?

To me, this painting combines a sense of peaceful harmony and colorful danger into one reality.

This painting is not for sale on Saatchiart, I might offer it as print on demand, though.

Saturday, December 3, 2016


Photo by Olivier Hijmans
Dried Sea Urchin

There is something to the number 5. Apart from us having 5 fingers on each hand and 5 toes on each foot, the number 5 is mathematically very interesting. It features in both the prime number list and the Fibonacci sequence for example. Then there is the ancient notion of the "fifth element" or "quintessence"...

But the number 5 also quite often appears in nature. Look at the sea urchin for example. Or starfish. Or leaves. Or flowers... as is examined in an interesting article by Japanese mathematician Yutaka Nishiyama.

The above picture is of the inside of a dried sea urchin. Beautiful esthetics here. To me, the star shape evokes a sense of unsurpassed freedom, expansion and scope. The number 5 gives rise to near endless architectural possibilities or morphological varieties.

Very often, I find the number 5 appearing in my art as well... a piece of music consisting of 5 parts for example, or using 5 distinct classes of sonic material. And in technical terms, I usually describe my art (both the sonic and visual) as an interaction and unfolding of 5 core elements: Entities, Realms, Perspectives, Transformations and Resonances.

Last but not least, my son is 5 years old now, an age at which a child starts showing him or herself in very outspoken ways.. 

In other words: Gimme Five!

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Climate of Change

Abstract painting by Olivier Hijmans
Climate of Change, 30 x 30 cm acrylic on canvas, © Olivier Hijmans 2015
A snapshot of an ever changing landscape, moving from desert to forest, from warm to cold.. Like many of my landscapes, this panorama shows multiple horizons, being less linear than it appears at first glance.. just as the human mind itself and our perceptions..

You can see the swirls of weather shaping the surroundings. The distant sun has witnessed many changing climates come and go, persistently carving and polishing the never finished sculpture called Earth..

I painted this in December 2015, now giving it the long awaited release it deserves...
For sale on Saatchi Art.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Kite at Eagle Peak

Abstract painting by Olivier Hijmans
Kite at Eagle Peak, 30 x 30 cm acrylic on canvas, © Olivier Hijmans 2015

Mountains always have my attention. Is it their solidity? Their overwhelming appearance? The way they play with light? Their vistas? Probably all of the above.

Kite at Eagle peak is a painting I made in 2015. It is now for sale on Saatchiart.

Eagle Peak is the mountain top where the Buddha is said to have expounded his teaching called the Lotus Sutra. This is regarded his most important teaching, in which he declares all life to be inherently endowed with the highest potential for wisdom, compassion, courage, happiness and fortune.. no ordinary message indeed.

So I used this single fluttering kite as a symbol for this state of absolute spiritual freedom, as it playfully dances around this serene mountain top. The moon is there to witness the show.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Future music

Olivier Hijmans, sonic and visual art
My studio 

Last summer I moved my electronic music studio into the atelier I'm grateful to be able to use. It has transformed into an inspiring art space, where I compose and paint, looking out over the historic city center of Leiden...

I took the above picture on October 13th, which is a very significant date for me. My father, from whom I inherited my interest in music, passed away on October 13th 1996... A composer, father and socially committed person, he will always remain a great example for me, standing tall like a majestic mountain in the uncharted landscape of my life.

Now, exactly 20 years later, I finally summoned all my courage to start composing music on a daily basis. For real. For the first time. Ever.

So I decided to dedicate to my father the piece I'm working on right now. It will embody my World view, my gratitude toward my father and my mentor, and my resolve toward the future.

It is called "Indara-Mo", which is Japanese for "Indra's Net". This is a Buddhist metaphor expressing the fundamental interconnectedness of all life and the universe. Do check out the story, it's so beautiful, and its implications so important...

My wish is to compose music that transcends what I have learned, expresses a new paradigm of interconnectedness, and resonates with people's hearts...

I will write more about this in the near future.