Marijke en Gerjanne van Zuilen

Our work questions the autonomy of and the possibility of modifying identities. As monozygotic twins we have developed a distinctive perspective and have rare possibilities to investigate the matter. The Piet Zwart Master of Fine Arts would give us a unique opportunity to deepen and develop our research and to take the next step in our professionalization as artists.
Even though we have the same genetic blueprint, we look upon ourselves as two different possibilities of one individual. If we are not careful in making decisions we end up making the same choices, which brings us to the question: how much freedom of choice does one have? Which part of the search for your identity is already fixed?
As twins, we have been more than average aware of being confronted with these questions, making us very conscious in the choices we make therein. This search for identity is universal. Every individual tries to distinguish him or herself, but remain part of the group at the 
same time.
We explore this matter by doing various experiments, in which we ourselves are the subjects. Identical twins have a special position in science to explore the effects environments have. Our research doesn’t focus on physical aspects, but more on identity and possible variants of the same blue print. We are so much alike, having our own identity is something we have to fight for. This raises universal philosophical questions. To have a base for our research we both took philosophy courses. We rely on a self-composed theoretical framework, based on philosophers like Plato, Heidegger, Richard Dawkins and Susan Blackmore.
We had our art education separated from each other, at different academies, allowing us to develop on an individual basis, as two independent artists. Nevertheless we turned out to follow the same paths, perusing the same interests, fascinations and processes. That is why we chose to work together and to profile ourselves as a duo.

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