Marlene Dumas

Home is where the Heart is

Dutch Art?
My fatherland is South Africa
my mother-tongue is Afrikaans
my surname is French.
I don’t speak French.
My mother always wanted me to go to Paris,
she thought Art was French,
because of Picasso.
I thought Art was American,
because of Artforum.
I thought Mondriaan was American too,
and that Belgium was a part of Holland.
I live in Amsterdam
and have a Dutch passport.
Sometimes I think I’m not a real artist,
because I’m too half-hearted;
and I never quite know where I am.

Home is where the Heart is. Originally published [in a French translation] in Du concept à l’image: Art Pays Bas au XXème Siecle (cat.), Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, 1994; and included in Marlene Dumas, Sweet Nothings. Notes and Texts, first edition Galerie Paul Andriesse and De Balie Publishers Amsterdam, 1998; and second edition (revised and expanded) Koenig Books London, 2014.