Interview Green Olive Arts, Tetouan

Florence Husen is a Dutch Artist and Art Educator from Noord Brabant, Netherlands. @florencehusen was born in Marrakech, Morocco, where she has visited annually for nearly 50 years. Florence came as an artist in residence to Green Olive Arts in 2017, and this past month we were able to have a virtual studio visit with her, to see her amazing space and hear how Covid19 has impacted her life and creative work during this season. Her studio is in a converted old church that was originally built in 1908.
Florence and Noutd (a musician and her partner since 1982) purchased the little church in 1999 and began the 21 year process of renovating it and transforming it into an art studio, a music studio and a living space. They spent years camping in the church when they first began restoring it but now it is a vibrant space for art and music. Over the years the church windows, altar, frescos and ceiling had been stripped, which was a shame. When they took possession of it, they were able to transform it into a fusion of historic architecture and modern Dutch design, infused with colors and accents of Morocco. Florence has a passion for color in her painting, drawing, printmaking, photography, and sculpture. During this pandemic, she herself came down with Covid19, and has been learning the balance between rest for recovery, and time for art and creative renewal. She has learned to go to her 'inner world' and not to be afraid of the silence and emptiness and quarantine… "to leave much more rest and to 'turn off' the outside world as much as possible".
Even while she has been recovering from Covid19, she has continued to find ways to stay grounded - spending time in nature, doing Tai-Chi in her garden, connecting with other artists online, reading art books and art magazines, and doing Monotype and Frottage printing in online workshops.
Florence has also been busy in the studio, working on a new series of 16 paintings on linen, entitle Micro Org, continuing several sculpture projects casting in bronze and glass, and exploring new techniques in printmaking. Her joy and passion for art, life and color are contagious, and she has inspired many artists over the years!