maayke x secrid

SECRID x Maayke 

Secrid collaborates with Dutch artist Maayke Schuitema on five Limited Edition Miniwallets

Maayke’s artworks, known for their powerful portrayal of femininity and its nuances, find a new medium of expression: the Secrid Miniwallet becomes a canvas for a deliberate journey into the depths of the female universe, explored through the dual lenses of private introspection and societal reflection. 
Our conversation delves into the collaboration's background, creative process, and thematic journeys, offering a glimpse into the stories and messages woven into each piece. 

Maayke x Secrid
Maayke x Secrid

Maayke Schuitema is a Dutch artist living and working in The Netherlands. She is known for her bold, large-scale linocut prints that draw inspiration from black-and-white photography and affiche art and often feature the interplay of body postures and emotions.

Her oeuvre explores the depths of the female universe, intertwining with the threads of her personal life. It becomes a means for reflection, allowing for a deeper and more intimate understanding of events, roles, and emotions. Through her work, Maayke navigates the complexities of her identity: being brought up among powerful but capricious women, the joys and challenges of her own motherhood, her space as an artist, her role as a partner, and, therefore, her strong engagement in the women's movement. Each piece saps profundity from several facets of her life while offering the audience a mirror that reflects womanhood’s universal yet unique experiences, 'She Decides'!

Your artwork intertwines personal experience with broader societal reflections on womanhood, serving as personal expression and a catalyst for broader contemplation. How do you combine your artistic work with your personal experience?

Art is personal! Coming from a family of artists, I was raised with the idea that artists are responsible for challenging taboos and boundaries and transgressing common values. Art needs to throw people off balance, evolve, and engage them. However, this can take a long time to achieve. When I look back on my artistic journey, it reads like an autobiography and is deeply personal. My upbringing, surrounded by strong and opinionated women, has also had a profound feminine influence on my work. It has been a long journey to reach this point, where I feel: ‘This is what I am about; this is what I need to tell’. But who knows, in five years, I may have changed my mind again.

Despite this personal journey, my involvement in the women’s movement has been a constant thread throughout my work. Recently, my work has become less personal and more socially engaged. As men have dominated the world for centuries, it’s up to female artists to shape social issues and lead the way.

How do you think your artistic vision aligns with Secrid’s values?

Secrid has been on a creative journey for over a decade, and so have I. Everything we make reflects our values and honest intentions. Secrid is a large company, but everything and everyone exudes commitment and humanity. Moreover, the ‘Secrid family’ is art-loving and is attracted to my art. In addition, their relevance and social participation mean they have chosen an artist who is significantly involved with the women’s movement. They do not back down.

  • Maayke x Secrid
  • Maayke x Secrid
What we wear expresses our personality, and art and design are the best mediums to showcase our values

Reflecting on the collaborative journey with Secrid, could you share your insights on how the selected artworks represent the synergy between our distinct universes?

The question is quite complex, but I will keep my answer simple: our universe is the same. The synergy between my universe and Secrid’s products is logical. However, Secrid has a more pragmatic approach to this matter than I do. 
As Secrid puts it beautifully, “almost all essential documents shrank to pocket size. We carried less, but what we carried was held dearer than ever before.” Therefore, this valuable treasure’s casing should have emotional and aesthetic value. What we wear expresses our personality, and art and design are the best mediums to showcase our values. 
When you visit Secrid’s workspace, you can immediately feel their energy, which I love. It makes it much easier to create with them since we are creative minds from the same universe brought together. Now that the five designs are imprinted on the wallets, it feels so natural and balanced. It embodies the feminine power I stand for without missing the mark. These Miniwallets are functional art for everyday use. 

Is this way of working as obvious to you as it sounds now?

“Absolutely. If the bigger picture doesn’t make sense to me, I won’t get involved.”

Maayke x Secrid
Maayke x Secrid

Which Secrid x Maayke Miniwallet do you think best embodies the essence of this collaboration, and why?

The collection of five Art wallets is designed to fit together as a whole, with a cohesive message of combining art and feminine power. However, each wallet is also strong and beautiful on its own. The use of black, white, and red to extract the artwork’s essence is a perfect representation of my artistic style. Secrid has recognised the power of this design and incorporated it into the Miniwallets.

What do you believe Secrid brought to the table that enriched your artistic expression or introduced you to new perspectives?

Kill your darlings. If you work together to achieve the perfect result, you have to be flexible.

Furthermore, with my recognisable ‘red high heel’, I am increasingly flirting with graphic design and fashion by collaborating with companies like Secrid, who embrace my message of feminine power. It’s a perfect and natural continuation of my visual story. Working with Secrid further confirms that I am on the right track, so thank you!

You primarily work on large-scale linocut prints. Do you feel that the intimacy of the smaller surface of a Secrid Miniwallet offers new dimensions or challenges in expressing the themes and narratives central to your work?

Female nudes protecting your private domain, how intimate can it be?

My paintings are not easily accessible to everyone due to the labour-intensive process involved in creating them and the fact that galleries sell them. As a result, they are often too exclusive and expensive for many people to afford. However, as an artist, you still want to spread your message. While the art world is a wonderful stage, it also has limitations. That is why I am happy I can now reach a larger audience by displaying my designs and messages on Secrid’s wallets. Since my work portrays large movements in black printed lines, it holds up in a small format. Of course, I had to make some concessions and approach it from the mind of a graphic designer, but I am happy with the result.

The female universe is central to your art; at Secrid, we believe that “A better world starts in your pocket”. This collaboration is the synthesis of the two. How do you hope the users of these Miniwallets will connect with these themes in their everyday lives?

Art is a means of communication that does not require grandeur or compelling messages to impress or make a difference. The designs for Secrid are derived from a 20-year legacy of artistic creation. The big story is condensed into a small symbol of art, extracted and simplified, yet its message remains unchanged. Those who choose an Art wallet do so consciously and connect with a message that strengthens them. But you may also think it is an attractive image, and every time you use your wallet, it stimulates your senses for a moment. Well, then, I like to think I have successfully completed the entire project!