Fokko Rijkens (1961, Nijmegen) consciously opted for the realistic department of ABK Minerva in the mid-1980s, where he started his studies in the upper years (3rd year).
Long before his Minerva- study , his work had a narrative and estranged character. He has further explored this visual language under the guidance of his teachers Wout Muller / Matthijs Röling and Ger Siks.
Under the leadership of Wout Muller (1946-2000) and Matthijs Röling (1943), the painting teachers at the Minerva Academy in Groningen, a fourth generation (painters) developed within the Dutch Art Group “De Groep', including: Pieter Pander, Sam Drukker, Herman van Hoogdalem and Fokko Rijkens.
The development of Fokko Rijkens is still continuing, now also through his contacts with members of the Neue Leipzigerschule. Fokko is also a member of the Drents Painter Society and the QuasiRealists.
In recent years he has painted the special series “MESSAGE”. They are portraits of “ordinary” Dutch people viewing a Message. MESSAGE XV, a self-portrait, was nominated in 2018 by the Dutch Portrait Prize Foundation. A special feature is the 600m2 bicycle tunnel (in the Onlanden) that he painted in 2019 on behalf of the Province of Drenthe.
Rijkens says the following about his paintings: "Reality is the greatest source of inspiration for my art"
As an artist you can best describe him as “Signaling Realist”, with his work he reflects the essence that he signals in the world around him. Often with foresight….