The Cat, The Crown and The Collar

  • Exhibition
    "The Cat, The Crown and The Collar"
    from Thursday, December 3, 2020 to Wednesday, February 10, 2021
    Galerie XII Shanghai

    Galerie XII Shanghai is pleased to present the solo exhibition of the Dutch photographer Marie Cécile Thijs. Titled “The Cat, the Crown and the Collar”, the exhibition will be on from 3 December till the end of December.

    Marie Cécile Thijs is an artist with a distinctive signature. Her portraits are still lifes, and her still lifes become portraits. She is influenced by the old masters in painting, yet her work is contemporary. The work of Marie Cecile Thijs plays with temporality. By connecting past and present, she creates an unreal, and surrealistic relationship with our notion of time. The images represent an unclassifiable moment. Each photograph starts with an idea that she develops in her imagination before looking for ways to stage and communicate to the viewer. In the series "White Collar” featured in the exhibition, for example, the cats and the boy are "wearing" an antique ruff collar from the 17th century. The photographer creatively breaks the conventional limits of time and space, immersing the viewer in a world where old and new, light and dark, reality and the absurd intertwined.

    Besides, the exhibition will feature works from various series such as "Majestic", in which majestic cats were surrealistically portraited with a nod to human nature. "Elizabeth”, which was inspired by the reign of Queen Elizabeth I of England and behind which hid the battles and the struggle for the crown. "Horse", where presents the fascination of this elegant and powerful animals. All these works show the constant personal style and artistic pursuits of Marie Cecile Thijs from her diverse subject matter. Her work tends to represent a parallel world where time and space have different dimensions. Every detail seems familiar—real—but at a second glance, everything is different. The totality is at once obvious and foreign. In her world, the absurd is the norm.

    Originally a lawyer, Marie Cécile Thijs decided more than fifteen years ago to follow her love for the camera. She is specialized in staged photography and created numerous series. She also made many portraits of writers, politicians, designers and artists. She made still life series Asia > Amsterdam in cooperation with Rijksmuseum Amsterdam, and EU 2016 Mementos in the assignment of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. She published several books, most recent Characters (2013) and Food Portraits (2015).

    Her work has often been published and exhibited, her photos have repeatedly received international acclaim and are included in the collections of the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam, Museum Rotterdam and many public and private art collections. Marie Cecile Thijs had her first retrospective in Museum aan het Vrijthof Maastricht in 2015. Also, her work has been exhibited at TEFAF Maastricht and Art Miami in the same year. In 2016 she was part of the exhibition Dutch Identity in Museum De Fundatie Zwolle. Also, her photographs have been exhibited in the EU 2016 paviljon in Amsterdam on the occasion of the chairmanship of the European Union by the Netherlands during the first six months of 2016. She had a solo show sponsored by the Dutch authorities at Corso Como in Shanghai in 2016.


  • Press