Bonaire is known globally as the world’s first “Blue Destination” but did you know that it is also a destination of another kind, driftwood! Situated just off of the Venezuelan coast, Bonaire receives regular amounts of Driftwood at its coasts, enough atleast, to build a career as a driftwood artist.
This is the case of Germaine Nijdam, born in neighboring Curacao, she took to art at a relatively young age initially inspired by her Grandfather whom too was an artist. After she spent a short period of time in Portugal she returned back to the Caribbean and moved to Bonaire where she continued painting on canvas before being drawn in by Driftwood design and art.
She is now known as a “Driftwood Art Pioneer” and has expanded her artistic projects to include all manner of Driftwood creations from shelves, lamps, chairs and benches to wind chimes and even driftwood framed oil. She states that her work’s main focus is inspired by Bonaire, she wants her work to be reminiscent of Bonaire’s heart and soul.
Germaine labels her artworks as “Houtzee” which translated from Dutch means “sea wood” or “wood from the sea”. She attempts to keep all her driftwood designs in their original form without alterations to their initial size and shape. She fits them together to create unique designs and signs off all the artworks with her signature as a final stamp of authenticity. She is available to make custom designs for clients upon request and her beautiful designs can be seen here should you wish to browse a collection of her artworks.
Germaine’s Atelier (Atelier, being the French word for a studio of a professional artist in fine or decorative arts), is located up in Republiek which is one of Bonaire’s hilly suburbs. We suggest renting a car to get up there, as walking or cycling can be fairly strenuous due to the hilly terrain. However, once up on the hill not only can you enjoy the wonderful art works at the G.N Art studio, but also a beautiful picturesque view of Bonaire and Kralendijk!