Our Golden Age

Poverty and hunger are phenomena associated with countries far from our daily western lives. Most people are not aware that even in 2021, in a wealthy country like the Netherlands, more than 1 million people are living below minimum income level.

Saskia Risseeuw confronts us with a reality we usually keep hidden from our eyes. She shows us the reality of the Food Banks. In the Netherlands people with a low income can collect a box of food ‘leftovers’ from the Food Bank on a weekly basis. These ‘leftovers’ are donated to the food banks by all kinds of shops, enterprises and institutions. Over the last decade, the Food Bank has developed into a large logistics company run by volunteers.

In her work on the Food Bank, still-lifes from the Dutch 17th Century Golden Age were a major source of inspiration for her. These paintings exposed the backside of the image of abundancy we have of those days. Her work shows us a similar uneasy relation between abundancy and poverty in modern times.