Materials: Paint on canvas

Collection: Collection Kortenberg.

Nicole trained as an artist and later ended up in psychiatry. Despite this, or perhaps thanks to her illness, along with the availability of creative workshops, she developed her own style and became a prolific artist. The context of the practice she established was the pioneering “creative therapy” that started in 1963 at the psychiatric hospital in Kortenberg (located between Brussels and Leuven). At the time, a hospital for women, Sint-Jozef in Kortenberg, now Universitair Psychiatrisch Centrum, retains a large collection of art by psychiatric patients. Characterised by their vivid, surreal and intense imagery, Nicole’s work was exhibited many times, although always in a psychiatric context and with texts describing the “symptoms” in the work. A drawing by Nicole was also chosen by renowned curator Jan Hoet for the exhibition Open Minds: Closed Circuits in 1989. Only her first name is used to protect her identity as a patient.

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