Leendert van der Pool
Leendert van der Pool, born in the Netherlands (1945) spent fifteen years in the Dutch merchant marine, working on freigthers, coasters and salvage ships. His early artwork (1976-1990) reflects the influences of his years at sea, both in subject and in mood.
After visiting the United States several times in the early 1990's and moving to New York in 1994, Leendert devoted several years to creating a series of large-scale, intensely colored pastel paintings based on Ellis Island, the New York immigration station. Ellis Island served new arrivals to the United States during the late nineteenth and early twentity centrury and is now a museum of immigration. The theme of these pastels is the experiences of the immigrants and the museum itself.
A self-taught artist specializing in drawings, pastels and oil paintings, Leendert has exhibited his work widely in museums and galleries in Europe since the late 1970's, and, more recently, in the United States, with recent shows of the Ellis Island series at the Ellis Island Museum.
Recent group shows have included exhibitions in Shanghai, Taiwan and Paris.
Currenty, Leendert is working on a series of oil paintings of Paris storefronts, and landscapes of the French countryside. Other projects have included a large seris of drawings, paintings and lithograps of the historical printing company, Mourlot Imprimerie, and "Boulangerie-Patisserie," paintings based on a traditional French bakery.
A travel grant awarded in 2001 allowed Leendert to spend two months in Eastern Europe. The results are a series of 75 watercolors paintings of village and farms architecture and scenes of small town life in Poland, Lithuania and the Czech Republic.
Leendert teaches workshops in color theory and drawing in the United States and Europe and spent a month in Japan during 2000 and again in 2005 as a guest instructor of the Japan Calligraphy Network, teaching color theory.
He lives six months of the year in New York and six months in Paris.
On September 22, 2010, Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands reward Leendert van der Pool the official nomination of Knight of Oranje Nassau, Leendert is the first artist in Zeeland who has this title.
Sheffield, oil on wood, 10" x 8"