biography and artist statement marjolijn thie
Artist statement

My work is cyclical.
I paint in different styles.
What fascinates me is the layering of reality.
We are not able to just register what we see- to see things as they are.
We colour them with our associations and interpretations.
We store part of the total, that what touches us.
My work is about these realities.
I am interested in what remains after observation.

So I paint nature as I see it, as I remember it, as I want to remember it,
as I feel it at that moment.
I add to it, I eliminate, I simplify, stylize, balance, I play with colour and shapes.

Tulips - I approach them differently, they are in my Dutch genes.
I explore their history, their inner landscapes, larger than life.
The painting becomes an emotional space.
Hues mixed, or set next to each other,
Ton sur Ton or contrasts, making music.

I feel happy after a day of good work ......
from - illuminating the fog that surrounds me - .

Marjolijn Thie
Visual artist,
Wakefield , Quebec.

“- What I dream of is an art of balance - ”
Henri Matisse

marjolijn thie

Marjolijn Thie - Emerging Landscapes

by Catherine Joyce in her book "Artists of the Gatineau Hills"

The art of Marjolijn Thie mirrors the movement of her life, reflecting the various phases of her travels and of her inner growth. From a childhood in the Netherlands to the wilds of Canada's North, to the pastoral farms of Isle d'Orleans, the alpine vineyards of Switzerland and finally home to the Gatineau Hills, Marjolijn has been painting the world as she sees it, both outwardly and inwardly, with remarkable depth.

"I was lucky as a child. My mother was very connected to Nature. She would take me on long walks by the lake near our village. She knew the names of every flower. I went to a two-room schoolhouse where the Principal was a well-known painter who brought us to study the Dutch Masters in the museums of Amsterdam. He also gave me private lessons - just watching him paint taught me so much."

Two weeks after she married in 1967, Marjolijn followed her young husband to Winnipeg where he studied forestry. Every summer they would go on field trips to the North. After a short stint as an elementary school teacher, Marjolijn enrolled in the School of Art at the University of Manitoba where Ken Lochhead, Ivan Eyre, George Swinton, Robert Bruce and Don Reichert became her professors. Discovering the Group of Seven and the work of Suzor Cote and Clarence Gagnon was a revelation, combining with her European roots to influence her emerging style.

For a while her own painting went underground as she raised her family. Working on commission, Marjolijn perfected the exacting detail of Dutch decorative art on antique furniture, banisters and vintage milk cans. However it wasn't until a move to Quebec in 1988 that she finally felt free enough to allow her own painting to resurface.

"The landscape was inspiring - first those old farms on the Isle d'Orleans - they were mysterious with a feeling of old France. And then the land itself! My life had been so busy and my home so eclectic. Suddenly I began painting these tranquil, minimalist scenes where I eliminated much of the detail, giving just a suggestion of the St. Lawrence. I wanted shapes, pale colours, greys and blues. It was so calming."

And again on a move to Switzerland in 1998 a deeper freedom emerged. They lived in a village in the Jura Mountains near Geneva, a wine district filled with the golden light of a Van Gogh painting. After hiking each day, Marjolijn began to experiment with abstracting the landscape into bands of colour and light - blue hyacinth and yellow dandelions in waves among the vineyards.

Upon their return, they moved to the Gatineau Hills in 2004, where Marjolijn discovered another inspiring landscape. The Hills and river released a flood of paintings, some abstracted into shapes reminiscent of her earlier Quebec paintings, others with the mysterious depth of an old Master.

However it is in the exploration of her Dutch roots that the fire has truly emerged. Her passion for the tulip has ignited her work - first in a series on the history of the tulip, capturing on canvas the Golden Age of the Tulip when one bulb in the 1600's might cost as much as a house. Then in the abstraction of fields of tulips into pulsing bands of brilliant colour. And finally in its most recent incarnation - the Tulip as love song - as dialogue between the explosive detail of the flower itself and the colours that give it life.

Marjolijn's work is cyclical, developing in an oscillating rhythm of freedom and restriction. Out of what she loves certain shapes recur, returning at a greater depth with each move, bearing her both further out and further in on her journey of exploration. In the fullness of time landscape and the woman emerge.


 biography marjolijn thie
Marjolijn Thie -Ter Beek was born in the Netherlands but received most of her fine arts education in Canada at the Universities of Manitoba (Winnipeg) and Ottawa, during the 70's. She exhibited in Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec and Switzerland and was a member of the Artist Cooperative in Ottawa. She recently settled in Wakefield and many of her Quebec paintings are inspired by the Gatineau Hills, the St. Lawrence and Ile d'Orléans.
I grew up in Muiderberg, a small beautiful village at the IJsselmeer close to Amsterdam. The typical impressive land, sky and waterscapes inspired me to work in the studio of Henk Damsma, a class mate of Karel Appel at the Academie voor Beeldende Kunst of Amsterdam. He taught me modern and impressionistc approaches in the tradition of the golden age of the Dutch landscape painters.
Manitoba: The move to the Canadian prairies reinforced my love of landscapes and paintings. The flat landscape and large skies of Manitoba provided the same challenges as the Dutch landscapes. During the first cold winter, the atelier of Muriel Guest, a leading Canadian potter, provided a warm environment to explore Canadian art approaches. From 1969-1973, I studied at the University of Manitoba School of Art. Here I received some of the most significant influences from professors like Robert Bruce, Ivan Eyre, Don Reichert, George Swinton and Kenneth Lockhead.
Ottawa : I joined an inspiring young artist cooperative in Ottawa: A Source of Art, where I exhibited regularly. It proved to be a productive period.
Quebec: My move to Quebec had a big impact. The vastness of the landscape, the dominance of the St.Lawrence River, the shapes of the Laurentians, the culture and history created a change of painting style. I eliminated details to bring out the beauty of the nature’s shapes and lines.


Switzerland and the easy access to major exhibitions in Europe provided a source of inspiration. The predominance of lines and shapes of the Alps and Jura mountains, the surprising gold and yellow of wheat fields and vineyards in the fall, the intimacy of the historic villages and towns inspire a strong visual and colourful approach to my painting, overriding my more abstract visions.

How to explain my style?

It is not realistic, not impressionistic, not expressionistic nor abstract, but it uses elements of all; Lines, shapes, colours are important, details are eliminated to reinforce emotion and vision. Sometimes emotions and intuition win, other times the powerful beauty of the subjects dominates or the abstract of shapes and lines. Spiritual messages colour the paintings of native artefacts. Flowers tend to be bigger than life; there is so much to show, the changes in colour, emotion, transparency, etc.

Exhibitions and sales
I have exhibited in Holland, Canada (Winnipeg, Ottawa, Quebec City), Switzerland and France and welcome opportunities to display my work in fine arts exhibitions
Most of paintings in the gallery on this website are for sale. Some are in private collections.
Atelier address
26 Chemin Pine Ridge, ,
Wakefield, Québec, J0X3G0



The Colour of Friendship by Naomi Catching

My first impression of Marjolijn Thie was coloured by her appearance and her Dutch accent. Dressed in unique finely made outfits of flowing colour accented by gleaming metal jewelry she was an outstanding presence in my French class in Carp. Her movements were confident and elegant as she swept into class. She seemed so worldly that I was completely intimidated and at first did not approach her because I was sweat shirt and jeans kind of woman.

During break one day she mentioned that she was a painter which developed into a discussion of artists we mutually admired. Although I look like a small town girl, which I am, I also happen to be discriminating about art. I worked for three years in the art history department at the University of Wisconsin and thus developed an appreciation of fine art. When she invited me over to see her work I prayed that it would not be the feeble work of the weekend landscape artist that I had seen so often when people showed me their art. Unfortunately, I have not developed the skill of false praise.

With trepidation, I drove up to her house which was a modern European custom designed home with odd angles nestled next to a pond on the outcropping of rock in the Carp hills. She came out to welcome me to her world of colour and light..

Her sun filled, open concept, multi leveled house was filled with interesting objects from her travels in Europe and Canada all arranged into interesting visual vignettes. Native artifacts like caribou antlers, and baskets, Delft Blue pottery, geometric rugs and throws made her home an adventure for the eye.

But then there was the art. Amazingly beautiful paintings large and small done with impeccable skill and technique, capturing memories and ideas in colour, shape, light and emotion. I was so delighted and relieved that I could compliment her work without a false note.

During the many years Marjolijn lived in Carp, I would often go over to her house and lift my spirits by going into her studio to see what new inspiration she was exploring. We became good friends and have shared gallons of coffee, many hilarious moments, a few tears and a long history of loving art. She now lives in Wakefield so I don't see her nearly as often but when I need a spiritual lift I go to her website and drink up the beauty of her art..

Copyright Marjolijn Thie 2021