Friederike Willich

Click here for the latest news

I’m a freelance artist with university degrees from Germany (Diploma in Fine Arts) and the USA (Master of Fine Arts/University of Pennsylvania) with the focus on painting. Presently, I am living and working in Bremen and Berlin.

Most of time I am working in “Cycles”, which means that I am living with one or more themes that fascinate me for several weeks or months and create a whole cycle of sketches, drawings and paintings to each topic. Cycles of paintings I finished in the past are for example “Streetfair in New York City” or “Berlin – City as a Home”.

The foundational approach of my art is to reduce things to their essential.


There will be plenty of inspirations from my “two hometowns” and different countries, places and locations I will be visiting until next June which will be the source for new paintings, watercolors and drawings.
By the time I will come to Leeuwarden I will have a whole body of work based on my search for “Open Community”. Leeuwarden will be the final stop and will result in artistic work, I am very curious about myself.

Will the “Cultural Capital of Europe” welcome me as a radiant city with an open community? Is there a unique society?
Will I meet people who introduce me to their community?
Will I get to know people in Leeuwarden who show me ”their“ Leeuwarden or their favorite places in Friesland, like it happened at that weekend in February?

Will I meet other people from different countries, who came to Leeuwarden, searching for an open community as well?
Will I run into people from different countries, who chose Leeuwarden to become their home?

Will Leeuwarden and it’s surrounding present itself with a totally new face, now, that it is chosen to become the “Cultural Capital of Europe”?


When I arrive in Leeuwarden I’ll keep my eyes wide open.
I will be walking around, riding a bike (as at home) and using my eyes from dawn to sunset, taking my sketchbook along wherever I go.
Who are the inhabitants of the typical Frisian houses?
Do foreigners or people with migration background have access to those houses too?
Are there signs anywhere that claim “Foreigners get out” as Geert Wilders declared?
Will I notice any indications of diverse ways of life and religious backgrounds?
I will search for secret places and hidden corners that don’t get everyone’s attention.
Who are the people, who live there?
What attracts me are areas, which are not in the spotlight, but more in the shade…
Will I have a chance to catch a glimpse of the life that takes place at the backside of the “Cultural Capital of Europe 2018“ too?
If the community is as open as I am hoping, I might even find people who help me discover those shady places and dark sides of the society.


My eyes and all my senses are my most important assistants to inspire me for my work. During my stay in Leeuwarden I’ll be keeping a journal as I’m always doing.

And my ideas, images, impressions and experiences – starting from Toronto – will either result in a series of smaller paintings or large seized canvases.

There will be enough ”substance“ to talk about and look at every single week while I am there.

The artistic essence of those three weeks in Leeuwarden will not necessarily be finished within that short period of time, but lead to paintings, that can most likely only be completed, once the period of time is over.

I will be happy to show the entire cycle “Open Community” in Leeuwarden.