Marieke (Rikki) Tollenaere was born in Pretoria (South Africa) in 1968, and grew up in Belgium from 1970.
Rikki studied Art at St Lucas Institute ( Antwerp) during high school; followed by Interior design at the Academy In Antwerp and later honed her skills attending an intensive Master Painter course at Meylemans school for professional painters, where she graduated Summa Cum Laude.
After her studies Rikki ran her own painting business in Belgium; completing many projects in private homes and commercial premises. Often working closely together with Interior designers and antique dealers, specialising in marble and wood imitations.
From a very young age Rikki has been attracted to the sea; in 1998 she had the opportunity to sail to the Caribbean; and did not hesitate, packed her bags and this led to a career as chef on private sailing yachts.
After having sailed for many miles on different oceans and visiting numerous countries, Rikki has called Mallorca her home since 2003 and started her career as a professional artist, capturing all those moments and experiences on canvas.
Nature is Rikki’s inspiration, she specialises in original seascapes and abstract paintings. Two styles very different from each other, with the common element to portray the colors, rhythms, and structures you find both on land and the sea.
At times her work is almost photo realistic, other times she paints seascapes from memory resulting in more abstracted and expressive pieces leaving the viewer open to their own interpretation.
Recently she started a monochrome series in bright bold colors, depicting the different forms and structures we find in nature and realised she has made a full circle, her early work was an exploration of different materials combined, creating strong contemporary pieces.
Rikki’s favourite medium is oil paint for her seascapes, but she also loves to combine different mediums to create unexpected effects, she wants her paintings to tell their own story, invite people to experience, not just to consume an image.
She has held exhibitions in Belgium, Mallorca and Antigua. However, her paintings are all over the world, through commissions and sales.
Newport Shipyard ,USA 2009
Restaurant Zee, Mallorca 2010
Rhythm of Blue Gallery, Antigua 2012
Abracadabra Gallery, Antigua 2017
Art@home open studio, Mallorca 2013/2014/2018
Cap Vermell Grand Hotel, Mallorca 2019
Café Rene Leuven, Belgium 2022
Harmony Hall , Antigua 2010
Mood Beach Portals , Mallorca 2013
Valldemossa Mallorca 2014
Sunset Market Puerto De Portals , Mallorca. 2018
Museu del mar Soller, Mallorca 2018
The Alaro Beehive, Mallorca 2018
Nit del Art St Catalina, Mallorca 2019
Golf Son Muntaner, Mallorca 2020
Global virtual Edition The Other Art Fair ( Saatchi Art) 2021
Kunst aan Huis3 Aarschot, Belgium 2022
Finalist Art Prize 2022. Artists of Mallorca, Can Prunera Soller Mallorca
The Floor, Berchem, Belgium 2023
Ses Rotes, The Beehivemallorca 2023
Art@Home, Open studio Puigpunyent 2023
Rhythm of Blue Gallery, Antigua (permanence since 2006)