Icebound: An exhibition of frozen images by Annelie Hendriks

Join artist Annelie Hendriks at her solo exhibition “Icebound” at Weave Artisan Society, Chiang Mai, from 12 to 31 January 2023, in which she layers archive photographs with cracking and melting ice to create unique moments in time.

Annelie, a Dutch artist who has been living in Chiang Mai for the last 23 years, developed her ice technique while in lockdown in Australia. Responding to a photograph challenge on the theme of ice she was momentarily stumped – after avoiding winters for so long she didn’t have much to work with. But taking this as a creative challenge, Annelie turned to what she did have, her freezer.

Thinking laterally, Annelie wondered what would happen if she put some of her photographs of cathedral windows into the freezer. Once they were frozen, she held the ice blocks up to the sunset and took another image as it melted. She then experimented by chipping at it to make cracks, working quickly before the whole block melted, creating a unique image each time.

Through this experimental process, Annelie has develop work in two themes for this exhibition, “Frozen Windows of Cathedrals” and “Frozen Vegetables”, in which photograph montages are composed using her photographs, a tray, a freezer, a hammer, sunlight or a light box. The results are an intriguing mix of fractured light and layered images.

Adorable Mushrooms. Image courtesy Annelie Hendriks.

When explaining the creative process, Annelie at first thought it would be a once-off experiment, but she was pleasantly surprised by the results.

“In the beginning, with the frozen images, I thought it would be a one-time thing…but the results were so amazing so then I continued.” Annelie was also inspired to expand her series of ice compositions when she discovered that the venue of Weave Artisan Society used to be an ice factory.

An underlying theme of Annelie’s work is also related to her travels – she lives in a number of places throughout the year and has strong connections between Europe, Asia and Australia. The photographs she takes on her travels, inspired by majestic architecture, finds its way into her layered work. In this exhibition, she draws from her broad archive of images, from cathedrals in Europe to markets from all over the world. This use of archive images enables a conversation between the past and the present, as Annelie says, “through the photographs you can still bring new life in the history of your photographs.”

Fiercely Peppers. Image courtesy Annelie Hendriks.

But even though travel is important, Annelie has been strongly tied to Chiang Mai for more than 20 years. And over that period of time, she has found that the local creative sector has changed drastically. She explains that since the opening of the MAIIAM Contemporary Art Museum in Chiang Mai and the establishment of Chiang Mai Design Week, things have really taken off. There is more cultural investment in the city (which was declared a UNESCO Creative City of Arts and Folk Art in 2017), with new venues popping up all over the city, creating a dynamic cultural scene.

In spite of this growth, Annelie explains that it is still a very accessible place for creatives. With the help of some local connections (such as those facilitated by Studio 88), it is possible to connect with local artists and spaces.

Cathedral Auxerre, France. Image courtesy Annelie Hendriks.

But one of the main reasons that Annelie loves the region, and has stayed for so long, is for its local communities, vibrant colours and calm environment: “It’s still quite original…It’s not yet so expensive here. You are so close to the city but at the same time in the calm countryside. It’s not for nothing that I live here and not Europe, for instance.”

Catch “Icebound” at Weave Artisan Society (12–31 January 2023).

Studio 88 worked with Annelie to help find a space and promote the exhibition. You can find out more about Studio 88’s services here. If you have a creative project to make a reality, get in touch with us today!