As a fresh face in the art scene, it is such a great feeling to admire and acquire your very first work of art! I recently bought a work by the Amsterdam based Dutch photographer Justine Tjallinks (born 1984). I did my homework, read many interesting articles and started wondering what kind of person she is and what her story is. To find out what inspires and drives Justine, I've met up with her at Café Restaurant Amsterdam whilst enjoying a nice cup of coffee.

The work I've bought through VanGoghle is titled Hurt (part of her 2014 Silk series) and was offered by Sophie Maree Gallery. I fell in love the moment I saw it, and that feeling grows stronger every time I look at it! The model in Hurt expresses both tenderness and strength, all captured in a setting with captivating combinations of colours.

Justine is an open, strong and powerful lady with a great sense of fashion. Not surprising, since she used to be an art director in the fashion industry. Although she loved her job, being surrounded by perfection, stylish people and good looking models, made her appreciate the opposite: the imperfection and purity of humans. That appreciation led to the fact that she wanted to capture these moments. So much so, that she decided to completely overhaul her life and do what she's always wanted to do: become a photographer.

Justine has a clear sense of what her work has to entail and what she wants the beholder to experience. As mentioned before, capturing the beauty of imperfection is a key element, as well as leaving room for interpretation, fantasy if you will. Her works seemingly have a connection to traditional portraiture and the have been lit and edited in a classical way. She doens't only want us to superficially look at people, but go deeper and try to see beyond percieved beauty. Standard beauty isn't real. Her art pushes bounderies and can be a bit uncomfortable, without being provocative.

Justine Tjallinks, Hurt, 2014

Justine Tjallinks, Origin, 2014

As I said, I am a so called first time buyer and completely fell for Justine's work, but who is her typical buyer, who else collects her photographs? Her buyers aren't typically old or young: buyers from al ranges appreciate her vision on art and see the beauty in the unusual. The balance between tenderness and strength and the friction of modern day life. Justine manages to capture serenity and alienation in one portrait.

When asked about her favourite work, Justine recalls working together with a lovely albino, Korean girl, which resulted in her favourite works Strength and Reach.

We will give you more details about Justine in part II of our interview later this week. For now I will leave you one recommendation: visit the Amsterdam KunstRAI (June 1-5)! You will be able to see works from Jurstine's Nude series at KunstRAI stand 39 at Sophie Maree Gallery. 

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