Black Pete vs Dream Pete #Update #DutchTradition

Currently, in The Netherlands, it’s the time of the national festival of St Nicholas. It’s a very old and populair Dutch tradition. Already since more then 500 years St Nicholas is celebrated as a family festivity with focus on the joy of the children. St Nicholas is a wise old saint who is a friend of everyone, especially of the children. He has a team of cheerful servants, they’re called Black Pete. It’s very possible that, people from far outside the Netherlands, have already heard of them because that’s where things start to be weird… Black Pete is generally played by a white person with a black painted face, red painted lips, topped with a black curly wig. Yes this basically blackface make-up, and gives the racist impression of expressing a caricature of a black person.

Even though it might be hard to understand for people outside the Netherlands, but St Nicholas festival is not meant to be racist. All Dutch people love Black Pete and the children see them as their great friend. Yet, in stark contrast with the overall joy of the folkloric tradition, the Black Pete persona brings a lot of controversy and debate in the country. Watch this video for more insights.

The supporters of Black Pete, who don’t see the figure as racist, want to honour the Dutch folkloric festival the way it is. For them, Black Pete is an important part of Dutch culture and needs to be honoured. In the contrary, you have people that feel hurt and offended by Black Pete. They find it a racist figure with obvious connotations with the Dutch slave trade. The Black Pete opponents want to keep celebrating St Nicholas but with an updated version of Black Pete, free from its racist features.

Protest voices, especially from Dutch people with a Surinam and Antillean background, raised in the early 80s. Despite their request for a more respectful ‘Pete’, not much changed. Understandably, since the last couple of years the presence and loudness of the anti-Black-Pete voice is increasing. We as a half Dutch artist duo, believe that the wish to update Black Pete is very rightful, better said… crucial. To be frank, we’re ashamed for the Black Pete figure as a representative of Dutch culture.

To celebrate positive change, and to exprebs the excitement that new choices and new customs can bring, we made some sketch collages of contemporary Dream Pete’s. With this blog post we want to express our position in the Black Pete debate (we actually really can’t believe that this debate is still going on!) and share our strong wish that Black Pete gets a gracious metamorphose that is joyous for everyone, and evidently not hurtful for people with a different background.

Happy Sint Nicholas celebration to ALL people of The Netherlands xxxx










This entry was written by Pinar&Viola, posted on December 3, 2015 at 11:53 pm, filed under Amsterdam, Folk, Persona, Political glam, transcendence, Trending. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink.

A heartful thank you to the Netherlands!


This entry was written by Pinar&Viola, posted on October 9, 2014 at 9:08 am, filed under Amsterdam, Art, Published. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink.

♥Fab Pink Allies♥ Outfit inspiration

In the streets of Amsterdam, during Gay Pride 2013, we photographed these fabulous lady-like allies. They’re dressed with style in ton sur ton pink. While we recovered from the pride, we digitally crafted with some photo apps, the ladies’ outfits for Gay Pride 2014. We can’t wait for next year!

gaypride_01 gaypride_02 gaypride_03 gaypride_04

This entry was written by Pinar&Viola, posted on August 6, 2013 at 5:25 pm, filed under Amsterdam, Fashion, Lifestyle, Persona, Photography, Pinar&Viola, Queer, Styling, Subculture. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink.

MaryMe-JimmyPaul @ AFW

Our dearest fashion designers MaryMe-JimmyPaul will open the Amsterdam Fashion Week tomorrow night (the 12th of July at 9 PM). We designed the catwalk of this marvelous show. We can tell you that it will be a grandiose interactive spectacle filled with MaryMe-JimmyPaul’s sculptural fashion fantasies. The show can be followed live via the AFW website or by downloading the AFW App.

We can’t wait for tomorrow! Good luck Marie and Jimmy with your last preparations!!!  <3



Hereby a selection of images of MMJP’s previous collections:












This entry was written by Pinar&Viola, posted on July 11, 2013 at 6:35 pm, filed under Amsterdam, Fashion, Friends. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink.

Rijks Museum is now open

Thanks to our dear friends at BULLETT Magazine, we were invited to take part in the grande re-opening of the Rijks Museum Amsterdam, with a seat at the from the front row, as part of the international press. Hereby few snaps from the day. Follow us on instagram for more daily entertainment.

That moment… #RijksMuseum
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#HerMajesty #TheQueen #Beatrix is looking at me #sup @rijksmuseum
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Caribbean swag at #RijksMuseum opening
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Dutch prince #WillemAlexander Instagramming the press #RijksMuseum
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The queen arrives!!!!!! #RijksMuseumOpening
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Police dogs smelling the press before the #queen arrives #RijksMuseum #Opening
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This entry was written by Pinar&Viola, posted on April 13, 2013 at 10:01 pm, filed under Amsterdam, Art, Exhibition, Photography, Pinar&Viola. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink.

Launch party Glamcult #2

Here an impression of the launch of Glamcult issue #2 where we celebrated the collaboration between us, photographer Duy Vo, stylist Lisa Anne Stuyfzand and Glamcult. The evening was presented as ‘A Rest Stop for Pinar&Viola, Duy and Lisa’. A Rest Stop for Rare Individuals is the new exhibition concept of Glamcult Studio.

♡ Thank you Glam Cult family for the great party ♡

The first two pics are from us, the rest is photographed by Nana van Dijk






























This entry was written by Pinar&Viola, posted on March 4, 2013 at 7:24 pm, filed under Amsterdam, Exhibition, Fashion, Friends, Pinar&Viola. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink.

Nike 21-Karat

Nike+ 21-Karat shows a Pinar&Viola version of the running experience in the future, through the eyes of a girl using the Nike+ App. Being inspired of Saar Koningsberger’s diverse interests, multitasking wonders, qualities and connectivity, they fantasized a 2.40 minute run where she has an ecstatic visual experience and where the run is enhanced with personalized graphical motivations and challenges.
This fictive, phantasmagoric-speculative imagery, mingled with realistic future predictions is made as a contribution to the Romance of Running exhibition, organized by Nike within the framework of London 2012 Olympics. The exhibition took place at the old Film Museum in Vondelpark, Amsterdam, in August-September 2012.

This entry was written by Pinar&Viola, posted on October 29, 2012 at 2:40 pm, filed under Amsterdam, Decadence, Digitalization, Ecstatic Surface Design, Exhibition, Glam Chaos, Pinar&Viola, Video, Visual ecstasy. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink.

Hans Brinker Campaign for KesselsKramer

Over long years of tireless campaigning, The Hans Brinker Budget Hotel Amsterdam has striven to become the worst hotel in the world. Its stance of proud incompetence has led to great success, especially among those with an appreciation of brutal honesty. Six hundred guests daily can’t be wrong.
In fact: they’re right.

Because of the guests’ decades-long devotion, we can add a new superlative when describing the Brinker: it’s Amsterdam’s No.1 attraction.
The truth is that the Brinker collects the best of Amsterdam’s popular attractions in one place. The beds are as cruel as any rack in the Torture Museum. The staff stare as vacantly as any dummy in the Wax Museum. And you just nip to the Brinker’s overflowing bathrooms to experience your own personal canal tour.

All these attractions under one hotel roof are especially attractive to the average Brinker guest, who rarely regains consciousness early enough to make it outside in daylight hours.
You’re invited to experience Amsterdam’s No.1 attraction, the Hans Brinker Budget Hotel.

Agency: KesselsKramer
Art-director: Gijs van den Berg
Copywriter: Niek Eijsbouts
Creative director: Erik Kessels
Graphic design: Pinar&Viola
Producer: Daphne Linthorst

This entry was written by Pinar&Viola, posted on October 10, 2012 at 9:25 pm, filed under Amsterdam, Craftsmanship, Ecstatic Surface Design, Folk, Friends, Glam Chaos, Graphic design, Pinar&Viola, Poster, Visual ecstasy. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink.

Queens & Hartjes

Hartjesdagen is an old tradition in Amsterdam. It has existed since the Middle Ages and boasts a history as colorful as its followers. According to local folklore, it was the only day in the medieval calendar when the regular public would hunt wild deer (harts), a sport traditionally reserved for the nobility. The game was then roasted on big barbecues and eaten in the streets. Hartjesdagen developed itself into a type of cross-dressing carnival, where men dressed as women, and women dressed as men. A typical scene was captured in the oil painting entitled Hartjesdag, by the artist Johan Braakensiek in 1926. WWII later interrupted the tradition but it was finally revived in 1997 on the Zeedijk. Hartjesdagen finishes with the crowning of the Queen of Hearts (best cross-dresser).

This entry was written by Pinar&Viola, posted on August 19, 2012 at 8:48 pm, filed under Amsterdam, Gender, Glam Chaos, Queer. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink.

NEW WORK: Fan Art 4 Aynouk Tan

Opening MOAM, June 14th, 2012 at Gallery Fontana Fortuna Amsterdam

Details from the fan art piece

This fan art piece is custom-tailored for MOAM Fashion Exhibition, which took place in Gallery Fontana Fortuna in Amsterdam.

The exhibition gave place to twelve young contemporary talents to give their reinterpretation of a Dutch fashion historic highlight. We were invited to make a work together with fashion icon Aynouk Tan. MOAM connected Aynouk Tan to the historic fashion icon Mathilde Willink, a known society girl, model and muse from 60’s that lived a decadent short live in Amsterdam. In an interview Mathilde Willink said she lived in a fairy-tale world of illusions and extravagance; where fame was crucial for her. For this work we were lead by her citation, “If people do not notice you, you might as well not exist”.
Her quote became reality in today’s dynamics of online social networking. Aynouk Tan’s Facebook pictures, and their endless praising comments confirm this. We scanned her online presence and used the results to tailor a contemporary expression of intense worship. We created a fan art deluxe that portrays Aynouk Tan and her flamboyant craves for attention and recognition. The work is not only about the one being admired, it’s also about the tragic beauty of the one that admires.

Concept: Pinar&Viola and Aynouk Tan
Design: Pinar&Viola
Photograps used in the fan art: Mylou Oord

You can read more about the exhibition in Diane Pernet’s blog.

This entry was written by Pinar&Viola, posted on June 19, 2012 at 5:14 pm, filed under Amsterdam, Art, Decadence, Ecstatic Surface Design, Exhibition, Fashion, Glam Chaos, Graphic design, Persona, Poster, Published, Things 'n Flings, Vernissage, Visual ecstasy. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink.

Amsterdam Queensday Art

This entry was written by Pinar&Viola, posted on April 30, 2012 at 10:03 pm, filed under Amsterdam, Craftsmanship, Folk, Holiday_Pics. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink.


Us in the Dutch Newspaper, Het Parool

Photo by Bart Koetsier
Text by Joost Morel

This entry was written by Pinar&Viola, posted on March 28, 2012 at 1:21 pm, filed under Amsterdam, Pinar&Viola, Published. Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink.

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