This is the place where ‘the magic happens’. From 2013 I’ve been filming here. Series like Natures Mortes (2013-2015), Respice Finem (2017-2018), and now Homo Bulla (2019-2020) were created here.
Unfortunately, everything comes to an end. The dismantling and construction of the Meelfabriek, as part of the redevelopment into a complex of homes, businesses and a hotel, is in full swing. I will be able to work here until autumn 2020.
The Homo Bulla theme in art has existed for centuries. On seventeenth-century vanitas paintings and engravings by Jan Steen, Barent Fabritius, and Hendrik Goltzius children blow soap bubbles or they fill pig’s bladders with air. You may think it seems innocent child amusement, the opposite is true. This is a warning about the fleeting nature of life. Museum De Lakenhal in Leiden owns a vanitas painting by David Bailly from 1651. Here, too, the soap bubbles point to the shortness of existence before they burst.
Soap bubbles professionals Saskia Marges and Jeroen Maatman from Bubblusion came to Leiden. For the series The Last Waltz they created special smoke bubbles. For the series Nocturnes they made a.o. ‘clustered’ shapes.
In The Last Waltz one session was filmed simultaneously from three different points of view. This resulted in three testimonies of one event.
In Nocturnes two films were shot in the former boiler room, one after the other. The other was shot on the fifth floor of the same building.