Welcome dear visitor, the site you are about to see, will show you a selection of the fine art photographs I made, some personal ideas and the sources of my  inspiration, like French poetry, la chanteuse Barbara, or the life of Marie-Antoinette.

I give lectures and workshops about the way I love to photograph, not only technical but also, and perhaps more important, about the contents.

My aim is to teach people to photograph in a more experimental way, to develop creativity, and to connect the art of photography with the other disciplines in art -like painting and film- and vice versa. If you want to know more about the workshops in creative photography or the lectures do not hesitate to contact me.

To see the entire homepage, please scroll down.

contact : cornelianauta@online.nl




Voor info over de cursussen die ik geef zie :






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Reproduction of these photographs without permission is prohibited, all photographs © copyright Cornelia Nauta


Early Work (1986-1993)




Mystere 1987

La reticence1987

La dormeuse 1987

Le regard 1987

Flying Time (1999-2000)

La musique nous est restee 2000

Some of the photographs I have made were inspired by a  French singer, Barbara. When she died, in 1997, at the age of 67, I made a picture about what was left behind, ses chansons, sa musique, her songs, her music. She composed mostly her own songs, and accompanied herself playing at the piano. All her energy went to the moment when she performed at the stage. Her shows were very personal, intimite, romantic, and passionate. I loved her concerts because every time it was different, and showed how she loved her audience. Not only she was a great artist, she was a very fine person in life as well, with a kind heart. Whenever I feel  lonely, thinking of her sweetness makes me feel better.

With the photograph "La musique  nous est restée", (what has been left to us is the music), I wanted to show that her music remains forever in our hearts. Like love, l'amour, music is eternal. Death is not the end of life. We are continiously inspired by memories and dreams of those who left us for the other side of the mirror. When I listen with my heart I still hear the voice of Barbara...

Un hommage a Barbara :

Bekenstein (d'apres Jacques Louis David) 1999

Normandie 1999

The photograph shows a window and a woman, two shots in one picture (without digital editing, mind you !). The window represents a  memory. A memory of Normandië.

Invitation to the Voyage (1999-...)

Je denkt

een station in Duitsland zo laat al 1999

Every  summer I  work at a serie of black and white photographs. You can travel or sit down and at the same time be elsewhere. Maybe in your thoughts you are already there where you want to arrive. Maybe your mind is still with the person you have left. Maybe you can still find your way in the house of your youth, a house that has been demolished since, and no longer exists.

With your mind you can be everywhere. So where are you really?

The photograph shows a mouvement, a shift in time, two realities. When you start to study quantummechanics, you will discover that there are an infinity of realities. A particle decides where to go, only  when we study it. So before we study it, it can be anywhere. We are a part of the experiment,  of the study. So, we are part of just one reality, the reality we decide to study. And the other realities then ? Invisible in one decisive moment,  I try to catch these temps plusieurs, these different moments in time, with my camera. A mouvement within a picture, which is impossible for me to see but which will appear when I develop my film, hoping that somehow mystery will surprise me and finds it's way in my art. Ofcourse, knowing how to make a mystery possible, is part of the technique I have as a photographer !

D'aller la-bas/Going there 2002

Waiting for you in Grijpskerk (summer) 2005

La resistance 2010

At the Other Side of the Mirror (2001-2002)

M.A. 2001

The serie  De l'autre côté du miroir is a serie about the French queen Marie Antoinette, who died at the scaffold during the French Revolution.

L'autre côté du miroir  2000

This photograph is the first one I made about Marie-Antoinette. It is also the photograph  that gives the title to the serie. What will you find behind the mirror ? The world looks the same, and yet there are differences...In the mirror you can see yourself, and yet...is that really you? Through the mirror you will enter another time, another époque. Un monde imaginaire, a world of fantasy where things are not quite the same.

During her trial  Marie-Antoinette knows that there is no way out. She only wants to keep her dignity. They killed the king. They showed her the decapited head of her best friend, Madame de Lamballe. They took away her children, and she had to endure the contempt and slander of the French people. They even called her the Austrian whore. Now nothing can hurt her anymore. But they do. They accuse her of incest with her son. She replies :  "If I  refuse to answer it is because nature itself  is against an accusation like this to a mother. Every mother here present will agree with me." ( "Si je n'ai pas répondu, c'est que la nature se refuse à repondre à une pareille inculpation faite à une mère. J'en appelle à toutes celles qui peuvent se trouver ici." )

A photograph is a reflection of my own image. But I do not know what I look like when I take the picture.  I am not really aware that this woman is me. Maybe she is someone else ...le temps d'un instant.... when I try to imagine what Marie-Antoinette felt when she was alone and abandoned by everyone. What I feel, Cornelia Nauta, is compassion for this woman who lived 200 years ago. That is perhaps the main reason why I started this serie of photographs.

Marie-Antoinette faces death. She knows what will come. Through the mirror she looks at us, aware of her destiny, her role in history. As a woman, a mother and a queen.

'J'étais heureuse quand vous m'aimiez 2001

J' étais heureuse quand vous m'aimiez (I was happy when you loved me) These are the words the queen Marie-Antoinette adressed to the French people when she was no longer loved by them.)   

   Seule 2002


Tout me conduit à toi 2001

I made this photograph because I also want to show the sensuality of the queen. She had a secret lover, to whom she wrote : "I can tell you that I love you". The window is a picture I made in Versailles, in the small palace where she prefered to live, Le petit Trianon. I sensed there a peace, the state of mind of a woman, who dislikes l'étiquette, who wants to enjoy herself among her friends, who loves roses, and the music of Gluck.

In the Land that Mirrors You (2002-...)

Ma tulipe noire, tu n'es pas là (désert) 2003

Mon enfant, ma soeur,

Songe à la douceur

D'aller là-bas vivre ensemble !

Aimer à loisir,

Aimer et mourir

Au pays qui te ressemble !

My sister, my child imagine, exiled,

The sweetness, of being there, we two !

To live and to sigh,

to love and to die,

In the land that mirrors you !

Since 2003 I am working on a serie of colour photographs. They are  inspired by the poetry of Baudelaire, for instance "L'invitation au Voyage" in which he compares an exotic country with the woman he loves, un hommage à la femme. With the text of the poem in my mind, I try to figure out what the words tell me, what they do to me, so that I can translate the words in my own language, that of the image. I try to experiment with light and shadow, different textures, colours, and create an atmosphere. In this state of mind, I try to be very intuitive. When ideas come up, I write them down in a notebook. I do not know what I am looking for exactly, but I do know that I have to embrase little things that happen by accident. Guided by these magnificent words of Baudelaire, I am overwhelmed with enthusiasm, and I can hardly think about anything else. I love to be in this state of creative thinking, because everything can happen. It is like a trip that I take for a number of years or so in the world of the imagination.

Les plus rares fleurs

Mêlant leurs odeurs

Aux vagues senteurs de l'ambre,

Les riches plafonds,

Les miroirs profonds,

La splendeur orientale,

Tout y parlerait

À l'âme en secret.

The rarest flowers

mix, with fragrant showers,

The vague, amber perfume.

The dark, painted halls,

the deep mirrored walls,

With Eastern splendour hung,

all secretly speak,

To the soul, its discrete,

Sweet, native tongue.

Charles Baudelaire, a fragment of L'invitation au voyage
you can find his poems in the book Les fleurs du mal, The flowers of evil
(Translation of this fragment A.S.Kline)
De verbeelding aan de macht :

La magicienne 2002







Reproduction of these photographs without permission is prohibited, all photographs © copyright Cornelia Nauta

I hope that my photographs find their way to you,

that they stir something in you,

like they did when I transfered them from my mind to the emulsion.

Cornelia Nauta Portfolio ©2018 copyright Cornelia Nauta