Dutch Masters & Marvelous Misfits

The 16thedition of FotoFestival Naarden will take place from Saturday, May 25thto Sunday, June 30th, 2019. Curators are photographer Koos Breukel and photo historian and author Hedy van Erp. Dutch Masters & Marvelous Misfits has been made with the intention to praise and include the misfit. The misfits presented at the FotoFestival are greater masters than they are given credit for – they are marvelous misfits.



Most of us have a misfit mindset. We feel we don’t fit in any available space of the grid of life, longing for an alter ego that seems superior to the identity we were given, but is actually flawed. Dutch Masters & Marvelous Misfits was created with the intention of including the fish out of water, for the sake of inclusiveness – a word that has been overused to lure voters to politicians and buyers to web shops. Genuine inclusiveness does however not mean being on fleek on Flickr, nor does it reflect any other social media perfection. Instead it represents embracing the misfits who we are.

Dutch Masters

Dutch Masters and misfits are much more alike than one would think. Misfits are greater masters than they are given credit for – they are marvelous misfits. Fotofestival Naarden 2019 shows painted work of those who neatly fit within the realms of labels and norms of Dutch Masters, alongside artwork and photography by those who don’t. Dutch Masters & Marvelous Misfits tells the stories of people and their landscapes, the latter in the sense of sceneries and thoughts. It tells the tales of our best and worst moments, from self-loathing to self-love, from rebellion to naivety, and the marvelous in-between.


Koos Breukel

Koos Breukel is a Dutch portrait photographer who lives and works in Amsterdam. At the age of 16, Breukel got his first camera from his mother. From 1982 – 1986 he studied at the School voor Fotografie en Fotonica in Den Haag. After his study he started working as freelance photographer in Amsterdam and specialized in portrait photography. His photographs appear often in magazines. Since 1999 he works almost entirely as an autonomous photographer; Breukel’s work is part of permanent collections of (inter)national museums and private collections. 

Hedy van Erp

Hedy Van Erp is photo historian, curator and author. As curator she works for BABY: Picturing the Ideal Human, 1840s-Now (Nederlands Fotomuseum, Rotterdam, 2008, and the National Media Museum, Bradford, 2009), Make Life Worth Living, Nick Hedges ‘Photographs for Shelter, 1968 -72 (Virgin Media Space in the Science Museum, Londen, 2014-15).

For the Dutch National Portrait Gallery she curated an exhibition of the work of Vivianne Sassen in the European Union Pavilion, Amsterdam (2015-16) and FACE TIME (2017). As an author she was co-responsible for You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet (FOMU, Antwerpen, 2013) and the book and exhibition ME WE by Koos Breukel (Fotomuseum Den Haag, Den Haag, nominated for the best photo-exhibition 2014; Kees Scherer Prijs for Best Dutch Photobook 2013-14).

Her most recent book Photography Decoded, which she produced together with Susan Bright, will come out in June 2019 (Tate Publishing, Londen).

Ballo Mascherato

Ballo Mascherato, Venetië 2018 ©Koos Breukel