The search to understand the historical origin of her own experience of trauma influences the concerns of Cornelia van Voorst’s art practice, yet nostalgia and a dependence on popular narrative is avoided in order to speak to the universal suffering of war. Referencing lesser known wartime stories– aerial bombing , civilian suffering, refugees, and German resistance- her work on paper represents a fragile empathetic conjunction of the personal with the historical, reflecting recent understanding about generational trauma and bears witness to an overlooked past and its resonance with the present.
Cornelia van Voorst’s fine art studies were interrupted by debilitating symptoms of what was later diagnosed as a complex form of PTSD. Her art practice emerged after a long period of recovery, and she has since been able to support her practice with study while respecting the limits of her disability.
Cornelia van Voorst grew up in Sydney, Australia and now lives in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.