In the film American Beauty (Sam Mendes, 1999), youngster Ricky shows youngster Jane a video of a plastic bag dancing in the wind. The scene is erotically charged and functions as one of the key references in my oeuvre (see also THE FAT BALLERINA HAPPILY ENTERTAINS YOU PART 2). Here I try to capture the feeling of dancing freely using a face mask. Movement is suggested by the way the mask barely touches the ground. The irony lies in the depiction of freedom using an image that reminds most people of restrictions, limitations, and me personally, of loneliness.
In 2020, critics of Free Netherlands said this work would be too contemporary and after a few years no one would get these connotations anymore. Look who’s laughing now.