Towards the end of January I completed a 3 month painting course that I had been taking at CREA (“Cultureel Studenten Centrum”). I took it partly because I felt like I needed to release my artistic ambitions and partly because I needed to shift my focus a little bit. Since the course that I took ended, along with many other courses, CREA hosted an exhibition to showcase the works that the students had created over that period of time. I went to check out all the beautiful works of the students and, of course, to make sure that my piece was hanging amongst them. The rooms at CREA were divided into different sections. One of the rooms was full of paintings and drawings of portraits, self-portraits, nude models and still life. The art works were either very colourful or in black and white. One wall was full of works resembling Picasso’s paintings. I entered another room and quickly noticed that I was in the photography room. Photographs of models and mysterious locations hung everywhere, and around me I heard people talking to each other about lighting and shadows. One student had produced a series of photographs of Amsterdam at night, which really spoke to me. The next room was full of ceramics. Abstract and realistic figures were neatly displayed on large tables for visitors to admire. When I walked down the stairs I saw that there was a theatre room and a film room. I was impressed with the fact that a big group of students had the capability of producing art that filled a whole building. What I particularly liked about the course that I took was that the people that were also taking it had different backgrounds. While I am usually surrounded by other students of the Humanities department, in my painting course I was surrounded by students of the medical department, science department and others. We all studied very different things, but we had one thing in common—we enjoyed painting. The exhibition made me think about the importance of art in a students’ life despite of what that person is actually studying. This might sound ignorant for me to say (and maybe I was ignorant of this) but I realized that even somebody studying mathematics could have the inclination to also do something creative, and that is why CREA is so important. Needless to say, I left the exhibition feeling inspired by creativity.
(Header image by Charlotte Arends)