Recent work
  Early work
Sylvia Roelfsema had always had an interest for the beauty of the human body. After her study medicines, she taught anatomy classes in The Netherlands, while expressing her passion for the body in the world of sculptures and paintings in her spare time. This is when her talent became clear. Her paintings, slowly transformed from realism into an emotional expression while always keeping the human body as main focal point. Initially Roelfsema’s art was dark and introvert, reflecting her own period of life. Later however, she changed her life and with it her choice of color and style.

In 2004 Sylvia quit her job, sold her house and travelled in her mini-van through Europe. She settled in a small community in France where she lived in a primitive environment. She painted in an old shed while cultivating the land for food. Sylvia’s work from this time period is to be recognised by its extreme simplicity.

After one year of living in nature, she left the community to return to The Netherlands and start a solitary existence dedicated to art. She moved to an empty farmers house in 2006 where the local authorities allowed her to reside until it would get sold. The house turned into a well-decorated characteristic landmark of the town, Roelfsema into a well-respected artist. She gained media attention and started to teach art. Her basic living conditions kept reflecting her basic art style. often existing of just a few powerful strokes. Walking figures in which decoration still plays a mayor part. Portrets are painted straight from the jar. Her distinctive style reflects power and sensitivity but it remains modest. In 2009 we see the silhouette of her figures changing; they become more realistic and get more body. The decoration on the background fades away and in some instances oilpaint makes its comeback.


"Archetypen" (96-86)
Simplicity, silence and growth are keywords of my life and with it the essence of my art.

All sides of my being are expressed in accurate lines that find their way to the linnen in a semi-consious state of mind . The results are archetypes, universally recognisable in every human being.

Coaching workshops in Museum Boijmans van Beuningen.
"Meestervervalsers" and "De grote ogen van Kees van Dongen".


Psygological Portrets (112-98)
These series were born out of the idea of making close-up-portraits of those figures, that had been subject of my previous paintings.

It appeared to be an illusion. Soon the project starts leading its own life and the faces become unique characters of their own.

In the paintings you will find several of my signature artistic styles fighting to get priority. Subtle sketches interchange with powerful strokes.

I use acrylics, gesso, lots of water, stamping techniques and occasionally a lace application.

Workshop " Het grote-doe-het- zelf- festival-versierproject", Magneetfestival Amsterdam.


“Sitting women” (120-113)
Who are they? Where are they? Where do they go?
Surrender? Surrender to what, to whom?
Resignation? Resignation or liberation?
Basic, versatile and powerful?


Mixed media (oil and gesso mixed or not, in layers over each other)

Past, Present, Future
From inside to outside
From outside to insite
Everyting is Entity


Departure to France. For information about my paintings please contact me by the way of or by téléphone 0033644760628

2005   2007   2007
2007   2008   2008
2008   2009   2009
2009   2009   2009
2009   2010   2010
2010   2010   2010
2011   2011   2011
2012   2012    
2013   2013   2013