creative space: Gisèle d’Ailly van Waterschoot van der Gracht

What can you say about a woman whose name alone is as illustrious and artful as her 100 years? Gisèle d’Ailly van Waterschoot van der Gracht is an artist whose life story unfolds through the paintings, photographs, furniture, leather-bound books and even stones, shells and animal bones that fill her canal house in Amsterdam. The very place she provided sanctuary to German Jewish teenagers during World War Two. Where life was hidden, but rich in poetry, literature, painting and drawing.

Gisèle grew up in both the United States and Austria, and studied as a teenager at L’École des Beaux d’Arts in Paris. She eventually settled on the Greek island of Paros, where she fondly recalls swimming in the sea each morning and painting in the abandoned monastery she and her husband restored, and called home.

I’m fascinated by the sheer vastness of Gisèle’s creativity detailed in these photos. Both the light and her life are truly remarkable. You can read more about Gisèle at Freunde von Freunden.

Enjoy, friends!

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photos by: Jordi Huisman for Freunde von Freunden

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