Madelein as Ida Hemelaers

The eldest foremother I have is Ida, a Dutch woman from the duchy Brabant. She married Handrick Hemelaers. She grew up in Lierop or Asten in the late 16th century during a witch hunt in these villages. Over a dozen women were executed. A demented old lady was too confused to confess and got burned alive. She must have known many of the women, who were accused of having sex with the devil and killing babies. Did she believe the stories? Was she afraid for her own life? Life in Brabant was hard as a farmer’s wife. I have no image of Ida. My sister Madelein posed for this portrait. Her reflection of Ida is that the traumatic events in her life, must have made her depressed. But she wouldn’t want to make others pay for her hardship. In spite of it all, she would smile and look happy. She would carry on. She wouldn’t want other people to think badly of her. 

Technique: Mixed media (stained glass, collage, acrylic)

Size: ca. 57 x 72 cm inc. frame