Some time ago a Dutch publisher got an idea. Why not make books that fit in matchboxes? Tiny little handmade books of interesting authors and beautifully illustrated. Squeezed into the tine space of the little matchbox. A perfect little gift for book lovers.

He went to Facebook and started a page.

I found the page, became a fan and did nothing.

And then all of a sudden last week Emmanuel van Leeuwe, the guy I mentioned earlier, send me a Facebook message. I was selected to receive a free Matchboox book. And I got excited. After echanging my address I waited for the mailman to deliver the little miracle and within a few days it was there.

And what a surprise it is. A book from Sylvia Witteman (the cooking books writer) beautifully illustrated by Nanne Meulendijk. Stashed in a matchbox with a great little cover. About what to eat when Obama comes along for dinner. Minestrone is a charm, a beautiful little treasure a little book to read and let read. To show to friends who without exception are puzzled first but become enthusiastic later.

So now I am totally in love with these Matchboox. This is not a commercial but I can safely say that I will Matchboox as presents for people I really like. A carefully selected beautiful for my long distance love who stole my heart and who needs a matchbox to keep it safe and close by. Another one for my daughter, I know she’ll love it.

As a writer an visual artist (film and photo) I feel the desire to make a Matchboox book. To get it published. It is the best format for a poem and so I wonder if that would one day become true. My own Matchboox with my own book. Handmade, beautifully crafted and personal. A gift to cherish.

More info? Check and join the Facebook page.

Alice © 2012

Every picture tells a story. As Rod Stewart once sang on just another one of his albums. And it’s true. Just like that a picture is a thousand words. My life and work now is all about pictures. Pictures made by me and other photographers. The culmination of my work over the recent months at this stage is the photo exhibition, hopefully soon to be followed by the film. But there’s more happening around me.

Some time ago, early this year, I met Johan Brouwer. He is an artist, photographer, who works on the empowerment of gay people in the Netherlands and he does so in a vey positive way. His response to the increasingly bad sentiments in Dutch society regarding gay people was his idea to make a photo and storybook that will show the beauty of the diversity that the gay, or better lgbt, world in the Netherlands has. We talked about it and he asked me if I was available to be part of it. Like publishing a portrait of me in his book ‘‘.

I suggested not to print a couple of photos but to use one, made by him at a place that’s somehow special to me, and publish that accompanied by a story of me. We agreed and the photo that you see here was taken at the Lange Voorhout, close to Pulchri, in the city where I was born, raised and where I now live. During the summer I wrote a story for the book while I was in Kathmandu.

Johan’s book, that I already love before I have seen the whole book, is soon to be published. Early Oktober there will be a presentation in Amsterdam. I’ll be there with a performance. What I’ll do there is a surprise, even for Johan. I am happy that in this way, by being involved and having a portrait of me published together with a short story in Johan’s book, I can contribute to a different style of gay pride than that was is usually regarded as pride.

There are very few transgender lesbian artists who are public on their gender and sexuality up to the level of being open, out and visible. It’s a choice I made to do this. I did so because of Johan’s positive angle on the topic and the quality of the book he is making. I feel proud to be part of it. Also because I’m part of a selection of people in that book that is a great selection with amazing people. So, if you want to see more of what Johan made: buy the book once it hits the bookstores. It’s worth your money. Check out for a sneak peak.

Alice © 2011