portrait 11
ilse vermeulen

Ilse Vermeulen is currently in charge of the costume atelier at Zuidelijk Toneel. In her career, she has worked as a costume designer for theatre, opera, film and dance productions such as for the companies ‘De Wetten van Kepler’, ‘Matzer Theaterproducties’, ‘Het Volksoperahuis’, ‘Theater Artemis’ and, last but not least, for Paul and Menno de Nooijer ‘De Lachende Koe’ (VPRO).

plea for the unknown
pleidooi voor het onbekende

“ a costume can be almost invisible ”

starring artist:

ilse vermeulen

text notes:

a (coupeuse) dressmaker, also known as a seamstress, is a person who makes clothing for women, such as dresses,
blouses, and evening gowns. dressmakers were historically known as mantua-makers, and are also known as a
modiste or fabrician.

puberty in terms of costumes*)
puberty in terms of costumes is the period in which children develop into adults with their own independent
choices for fabrics and patterns. they become sexually mature and develop mentally into adults. in general,
puberty, also in terms of costumes, falls between the ages of ten and eighteen:)

fashion school*)
a fashion school is a training institute where people can be trained at various levels to work in the fashion industry,
from tailor, costumier, cutter, to couturier and / or fashion designer. in the netherlands, these are generally private
training institutes that offer both complete vocational training and individual courses. the oldest fashion vocational
schools in the netherlands date from around1890.

embroidery is the craft of decorating fabric or other materials using a needle to apply thread or yarn. embroidery
may also incorporate other materials such as pearls, beads, quills, and sequins. the art of embroidery has been
found worldwide and several early examples have been found in china from the 5th–3rd century bc.

higher general secondary education, often abbreviated as havo, is the second highest level of secondary education
in the kingdom of the netherlands and suriname. in principle, havo is not a final education – it is general education
(theoretical) and not vocational training. the havo degree is a starting qualification.

pedagogical academy*)
the pedagogical academy for primary education is the training institute for teaching staff in primary education in
the netherlands – origins at the end of the 19th century. it is a four-year higher professional education with
mandatory internships as teacher in training.

academy for visual (art) education tilburg*)
this education was founded in 1918 as a drawing department of the ‘leergangen’ – the roman catholic courses.
after an expansion with an architectural department, it became in 1920 the academy for visual and building arts.
in the late 1950’s the name was changed to the academy for training drawing and crafts teachers. the current
name academy for visual (art) education was adopted from 1978. the course is now part of fontys university
of the arts.

theater design*)
the department theater design became early eighties part of the academy for visual (art) education tilburg

wim beerings – theater company ‘de wetten van kepler’ (kepler’s laws)
‘kepler’s laws’ was a dutch theater company that was founded in 1995 and had to stop in 2008 due to the loss
of subsidy. ‘as long as it snows’ was the last production that founder and artistic director wim berings staged
from theater ‘de verkadefabriek’ (verkade factory) in den bosch.

matzer theater productions
in 2005, madeleine matzer founded the theater company matzer theater productions. she has made dozens
of theater productions, such as ‘tij’ (tide) in 2005 in collaboration with theaterfestival boulevard in den bosch.

paul and menno de nooijer*)
inspired by the novel multimedia possibilities of the computer, in the late 1990’s paul and menno de nooijer
consciously opted for a blend of traditional disciplines based on the ideals of the ‘gesamtkunstwerk’
(total work of art) oscar schlemmer’s interdisciplinary bauhaus theatre. paul and menno de nooijer have
consistently probed the visual possibilities of the photographic medium – analogue and digital – in relation
to film, theatre and visual art.

artemis is a leading youth theater company from den bosch, under the artistic direction of jetse batelaan
(since 2013). the group is one of the house ensembles of the bossche verkadefabriek. the company creates
interactive and anarchic theater performances in which a high degree of lawlessness prevails. artemis won
the ‘gouden krekel award’ (golden cricket) twice in 2010 and 2021.

stip theater productions*)
stip theater productions is founded by joop kuyvenhoven in 1987. stip specializes in the tour planning of the
best youth theater companies in the netherlands and they produce themselves for young and talented
creators who have yet to conquer their place in the world of theater.

keesen&co – willibrord keesen*)
willibrord keesen is director and artistic leader of a theater company he founded in collaboration with
monique kuijpers in 1989, which has been called keesen&co since 1998. keesen directed contemporary
versions of classics, including shakespeare and chekhov and newly written texts.

textile museum tilburg*)
with origins in 1924, the textile museum was finally located in 1986 in the former woolen fabric factory
c. mommers & cie in tilburg netherlands. an important section of the museum is the international textile lab
where artists from all over the world experiment with textiles.

the southern theater company*)
founded in 1954, the theater company of the province of north brabant changed to ‘het zuidelijk toneel’
(southern theater company) located in eindhoven and continued in 1968 as ‘zuidelijk toneel globe’.
gerardjan rijnders developed it into a controversial theater company that fearlessly adapted classical repertoire
and presented new work, succeeded by ivo van hoven who showed the value of flemish-dutch cross-pollination.
in 2001, the company merged with theater group hollandia to form ‘zt hollandia’ and also acted outside the
theater halls. the company again named as the southern theater company has been based in tilburg since 2010.

suriname, officially the republic of suriname, is a republic on the north coast of south america with its capital
paramaribo. the country was a colony of the netherlands from 1667 to 1954 and then a country within the kingdom.
suriname became independent on november 25, 1975.

doewet foundation*)
the aim of the doewet foundation is to realize performing arts productions with diversity and inclusivity characteristics.
the first project is ‘boni the musical’ (in collaboration with the southern theater company), about the freedom
fighter in suriname who fought against the colonial rule of the netherlands.

meredith yoeroeya*)
at the age of 18, meredith yoeroeya began exploring the fashion industry. in 2015 she won her first fashion
competition at the age of 19, and she won the second in 2017 in amsterdam. after this success, she started
her own fashion label ‘merrymarian’ under the guidance of her mother helen nijman. in 2019 she won the
‘young designer of the year’ award 2019-2020 from black fashion week.

‘tembe’ – script*)
the tembe-afaka script (afaka sikifi) is a syllabic script with 56 letters. the script was developed around 1910 for
ndyuka, a creole language in suriname. the name of the script comes from its creator, afáka atumisi,
a ndyuka maroon. it is unknown to what extent people still write in the afaka script in the 21st century.
symbols from this script can also be seen in traditional surinamese wood carving.

credits pictures and videos
shown by ilse vermeulen

various costumes and fabrics in progress (2023)
costume studio southern theater company in tilburg
is the location of the film shooting

special element in the costume studio – nature print on textile (2023 / 2019)
design: ilse vermeulen

special element in the costume studio – ‘boni’
design and creation costumes: ilse vermeulen i.c.w. meredith yoeroeya

costume ‘pinstripe suit’ – kepler’s laws (1994)
solo performance ‘eerste liefde’ – ‘first love’
writer: samuel beckett
director: wim berings
actor: romijn conen
location: cooymans factories, ”s-hertogenbosch
costume design and creation: ilse vermeulen
photography: joep lennarts / august swietkowiak

matzer theater productions – ‘marilyn monroe’ (2010)
director: madeleine matzer
actors: wendell jaspers, fokka deelen, marlijn weerdenburg, helge slikker, jasper boeke
writers: frouke fokkema, peter de graef, frederieke hijink, gerardjan rijnders
costumes: ilse vermeulen
photography: joep lennarts

matzer theater productions – ‘alice’ (2010)
based on ‘alice in wonderland’
director: madeleine matzer
actors: charlie-chan dagelet, simon heijmans, job raaijmakers, chiara tissen
writer: chiara tissen
costumes: ilse vermeulen
photography: joep lennarts

matzer theater productions – ‘knielen op een bed violen’ – ‘kneeling on a bed of violets’ (2008)
director: madeleine matzer
actors: titus boonstra, cees geel, wendell jaspers, marijn klaver, patrick stoof
writer: jan siebelink
costumes: ilse vermeulen
photography: joep lennarts

hzt- the southern theater company – ‘sartre & de beauvoir’ (2021)
direction and text: stefaan van brabandt
actors: frank focketijn, sien eggers
costumes: ilse vermeulen
source photo sartre & de beauvoir: anp/epa/afp
fotography: koen broos

2x film fragments – paul en menno de nooijer – (1997)
costumes: ilse vermeulen

‘woman in e’ (2016) – de pont museum tilburg (2022-23)
installation as part of the exhibition: ‘time changes everything’: ragnar kjartansson
design and creation golden dresses: ilse vermeulen

‘bladerjas’ – ‘leaves coat’ (1999)
design and creation costume: ilse vermeulen

‘hoe het loopt’ – ‘how it walks’ (2010)
textile installation in hilvaria studio’s
design and creation textile installation with costume and the ultra long veil: ilse vermeulen
in addition design and creation tableware: janhein van melis

‘moeder en kind’ – ‘mother and child’ (2018)
design and creation mixed media on textile: ilse vermeulen

hzt- the southern theater company – ‘boni’ (2023)
desing and creation costumes: ilse vermeulen i.c.w. meredith yoeroeya

theater company keesen&co – ‘zicht op zee’ – ‘sea view’ (2010)
design and creation costumes: ilse vermeulen

matzer theater productions – ‘de reuzenperzik’ – ‘the giant peach’ (2017)
2 x design and creation costumes: ilse vermeulen

theater artemis – ‘het dier, het dier en het beestje’ – ‘the animal, the animal and the little beast’ (2021)
design and creation costumes: ilse vermeulen

theater artemis – ‘een leuk avondje uit’ – ‘a nice night out’ – (2022)
design and creation skirts final scene: ilse vermeulen

hzt – the southern theater company – ‘mission moliere’ (2023)
design and creation costumes: daphne de winkel / ilse vermeulen

hzt – the southern theater company – ‘kroon’ – ‘crown’ (2022)
design and creation costumes: ilse vermeulen

televisie vpro – jeugdserie paul en menno de nooijer – ‘de lachende koe’ – ‘the laughing cow’ (1994)
dance and design and creation costume: ilse vermeulen
photography: august swietkowiak

portrait 11 ilse vermeulen

portrait 11
ilse vermeulen

camera and video editing: tom pijnenburg
research, editorial, text titles: jan doms

graphic design: jan doms
opening sequence: pieter reijnen & tom pijnenburg
sound: aspa petrov – prefuse 73 dvořák
ernst bonis – composition taksim

music end credits: jan de nooijer

portrait 11
ilse vermeulen

is made possible by:

production and distribution:
internationals art channel foundation 
tilburg – heart of brabant
the netherlands

portrait 11
ilse vermeulen

art © channel


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