Theo Derksen has a fascination for change. He travels a lot, his photos testify to this; but his photography - not like that of a reporter - is about astonishment, not the awe of the tourist ("How strange is all this, how different from us"), but the surprise of a child who is wondering what it sees , without really needing answers to the questions that come up. We motivate this same open, childlike surprise in Derksen's photography of people, people in situations that are not specifically defined by place, time or action.
The viewer does not immediately know where or why the photo was taken, but on closer examination, a not always univocal meaning emerges. Effectively when you are confronted with Derksen's photographs, you adopt his way of looking, the vigilance and the wonder of a child who looks at the world.
The meanings are not fixed on a journey, the message and the context are constantly shifting, changing constantly as places change, the environment changes. The great quality of Derksen's photographs is that they start with the simple rendering of reality, but that reality, as always, is deceptive, a temptation of the eye; then in our mind we release the bond with the superficial meaning. In front of the context we observed and peel away the layers of conventional seeing from reality. We develop images in our spirit of worlds, which are hidden behind this reality. Images that reach us through the eye, but slowly and surely hang in the mind.
Derksen graduated as BA photographer and BA audiovisual designer at the Breda University of Fine Arts in the Netherlands. He studied two postgraduate courses at the Erasmus University in Rotterdam.
He worked for 15 years for various magazines, newspapers and companies. He was also a parttime professor at the ZUYD University Applied Arts in Maastricht. He taught photography, audiovisual design and research. For the last 15 years he was head of the visual communication department and involved in the foundation of the new faculty, Media Design and Technology at ZUYD University - Applied Arts in Maastricht. He was a member of the managment team of this faculty and worked as a member in the research team Infonomics and New Media.
In recent years he has again focused on various art and art projects as an artist and entrepreneur.
In addition, Derksen collaborates with Lilian Creemers, visual artist, art director and curator, in art productions for art and cultural projects. Together they organize and initiate inspiring presentations, exhibitions, art and culture projects, public activities and educational projects. Making relationships with and between other initiatives, art forms, social developments, collections and stories is the main goal.
His art work is in national and international, private as well as corporate collections.
His photography has been awarded several times, including the Kodak Award, Amsterdam Stipendium for Art, Limburg Province stipend, Dunhill.
He is published in various books. His work is exhibited nationally and internationally.