PhotoLexicon, Volume 21, nr. 36 (November 2004) (en)

Rees Diepen

Ineke Oele-Kap


In the period 1955 to 1975, Rees Diepen’s photos of children enjoyed wide renown in the Netherlands. Her style of photography was modern. She had no affinity whatsoever with glamour portraits of children in their Sunday best and ‘shining’ faces. Yet she was no more predisposed toward photography with design effects originating in the era of New Photography. Her children’s photos are always unposed and photographed at the ‘child’s level’. The child has the feeling no one is watching. In the 1960s, Rees Diepen was commissioned by the Stichting voor het Kind (‘Foundation of the Child’) to photograph children with mental disabilities—a subject that had long been taboo.




Theresia Maria (Rees) Diepen is born on 12 November in Tilburg, as the eleventh and final child of Dr. Ing. Herman Diepen and Colet Berghegge. Her father was a textile manufacturer, who also enjoyed taking photos.


Rees enrols at the University of Nijmegen to study law.


Having passed her ‘kandidaats’ exam (equivalent to a bachelor’s-level diploma), Diepen continues further in a liberal study programme, with legal philosophy as her major, sociology and economy as her minors.


In February, Diepen completes her doctoral exam. In March, she comes into the possession of a Kodak box camera and begins photographing.


At the advice of Martien Coppens, Diepen begins work as an apprentice to Frans van Bichelaar, a professional photographer in Geldrop (North Brabant). She takes a class in reportage photography at the Nederlandse Fotovakschool (‘Netherlands Vocational School of Photography’) in The Hague.


Diepen receives her diploma at the vocational school of photography. She sends photos to Nanny Snijders-Oomen, a renowned child psychologist, in the hope that she will publish her photos. For two of her articles, Snijders-Oomen publishes a photo taken by Diepen.


Martien Coppens asks Diepen to write an article about children’s photography for the magazine Fotografie. Vakblad voor het fotografisch ambacht (‘Photography. Trade Magazine for the Photographic Profession’). Diepen establishes herself as an independent photographer in Tilburg. She illustrates the book Spelend voor Gods aangezicht (‘Playing in the Face of God’) by Nanny Snijders-Oomen. In a desire to increase her contact with other professional photographers, Diepen becomes a member of the NFK (Nederlandse Fotografen Kunstkring, ‘Netherlands Photographers Art Society’). She also becomes involved in the Brabantse Stichting voor Beeldende Kunst en Edelambacht (‘Brabant Foundation for Visual Art and Jewellery Craft’). Diepen finds a suitable assistant, Ria Basemens, to do darkroom work.


Rees Diepen has her first exhibition in Tilburg. In collaboration with Nanny Snijders-Oomen, her first photobook appears, entitled Argeloos Begin (‘Unsuspecting Start’).


In 1964, Diepen is approached by Stichting voor het Kind (‘Foundation of the Child’) with the request to take fifty photos of mentally disabled children. The photos are shot at Huize Maria Roepaan, a leading institute specialised in disability care, located in Ottersum (Limburg). It is here that Diepen comes into contact with G. van der Most, the institute’s physician-director, who is also an amateur photographer. Van der Most asks Diepen to take photos for the institute’s new folder. This contact later leads to a book on mentally disabled children. The book appears in 1966, entitled Dit kind, een confrontatie met ernstige zwakzinnigheid (‘This Child, a Confrontation with Serious Dementia’), produced in collaboration by Diepen, Van der Most, and the orthopedagogue J. Fennis.


Diepen is a co-worker at the magazine Ouders van Nu (‘Parents of Now’).


Diepen comes into contact with African sculpture through Jan van Haaren. She begins collecting and photographing African miniature sculptures.


Diepen self-publishes a photobook about her collection of African sculptures. With this project, Diepen ends her career as a photographer.


At the age of twenty-four, Rees Diepen acquired a camera and discovered that she greatly enjoyed taking photos. Having just completed her university studies, there were no signs that her future might lie in photography. Yet she soon became increasingly aware that she wanted to do more than just take amateur photos. Her brother-in-law Jan van Haaren subsequently contacted Martien Coppens, a prominent photographer in Eindhoven. Coppens suggested that Diepen go to work as an apprentice for Frans van de Bichelaar, a professional photographer in Geldrop (South Holland). Van de Bichelaar proved to be a patient man who was quite proficient at explaining the technical aspects, giving her knowledge that she required. On his advice, she traded in her Kodak box camera for a Rolleicord. Diepen soon realised she had found her calling and decided to obtain a professional diploma—in those days a condition if one wished to work as a photographer. She took a written correspondence course on reportage photography with the Nederlandse Fotovakschool (‘Netherlands Vocational School of Photography’) in The Hague and promptly earned the necessary diploma.

Although Diepen would preferred to have specialised in reportage photography, she felt she lacked the physical strength it entailed. As an alternative she turned to photographing children, a field she believed had not yet been fully explored. At this time, children’s photos were typically posed and presented more of an idealised picture. By contrast, what Diepen liked about children was their authenticity and directness. She therefore began taking photos of her nieces and nephews, and the friends of her children.

Diepen continued to doubt herself, however, in part because those around her disagreed with her for doing nothing with her education in law. To be sure that photography was the right choice, Diepen turned once again to Martien Coppens. Coppens was enthusiastic about Diepen’s work and asked her to write an article about photographing children, to be published in the magazine of which she was chief editor: Fotografie. Vakblad voor het fotografisch ambacht (‘Photography. Professional Magazine for the Photographic Profession’). Coppens’ positive advice removed every doubt for Diepen.

In 1956, Diepen established herself as an independent photographer in Tilburg. In her article for Fotografie, which appeared in the same year, she writes that a child should be photographed as naturally as possible. Her advice is to photograph a child in its own environment, as opposed to a photography studio. Doing this requires much time and patience on the photographer’s part, whose actual task is to avoid being seen. Only when a child is no longer aware of the photographer’s presence can a ‘natural photo’ be taken, in order to show something of that child’s essence. Obviously, this requires a great deal of film material, as the child’s moving about means that not every photo is going to be a success. Diepen also believes that concessions have to be made when it comes to background and lighting.

While the notions described by Diepen might perhaps seem far from revolutionary, in practice, professional photographers were anything but ‘child-friendly’ in their approach to portraying children. It would still require approximately another forty years before photographers learned to observe children in their own surroundings, in terms of their own specific body language and vulnerable beauty, and at their own eye-level. In the Netherlands, those who have rediscovered the child as a theme are in most cases notably women: Marrie Bot, Rineke Dijkstra, Esther Kroon, and Céline van Balen.

One year before establishing herself as an independent photographer, in 1955, Diepen submitted a number of photos to Nanny Snijders-Oomen, a renowned child psychologist in Groningen. Snijders subsequently included one of Diepen’s photos to accompany each of two articles she had written: one in the magazine Elegance, the other in the magazine Opvoeding (‘Upbringing’). This move marked the beginning of years of collaboration as well as a close friendship.

In 1956, Diepen travelled to Groningen, where the two women met each other for the first time. At this time, Snijders was busy writing the book Spelend voor Gods aangezicht (‘Playing in the Face of God’), for which Diepen asked do the photos. This book, which gives advice on the religious upbringing of children up to the age of seven, ran for seven editions. In 1960, Diepen began illustrating a second book for Snyders, entitled Kleine kinderen worden groot. Kinderpsychologie voor opvoeders. (‘Small Children Become Big. Child Psychology for Educators’), of which the sixteenth edition was published in 1968. Meanwhile, Diepen’s children’s photos were appearing regularly in a variety of magazines. A desire to exhibit her work also began to emerge.

In 1959, Diepen became a member of the Brabantse Stichting voor Beeldende Kunst en Edelambacht (‘Brabant Foundation for Visual Art and Jewellery Craft’), a foundation that organised exhibitions for a variety of artists in a bulding on the Spoorlaan in Tilburg. It was here that Diepen exhibited thirty-eight children’s photos in March 1960. The exhibition was introduced by Martien Coppens, who emphasised the naturalness and authenticity of Diepen’s work. He also observed that the photos surpassed the individuality of children’s portraits, thereby obtaining a universal value, showing not just any child, but rather ‘the’ child. The exhibition was widely praised in the press. The added value that Diepen was able to instil in these portraits was especially related to their expression. She photographed joy and sadness, as opposed to any one ‘special’ child. Their names were less important than their eyes, their smile, or their tragedy.

At a certain point, the collaboration with Nanny Snijders-Oomen became more intensive. In the books Spelend voor Gods aangezicht and Kleine kinderen worden groot, the photos served no more than to illustrate the text. In the next book, entitled Argeloos begin (‘Unsuspecting Start’), the text and photos played an equally important role. In the years following the Second World War, the photobook in general had experienced a success such as never seen before. In the years of the reconstruction, during which hope and optimism reigned, photobooks typically presented an idealised image. In these photobooks, attention was often devoted to the story of people involved in their everyday activities and emotions: their worries, their successes, their joy and sadness. In this human interest photography, the child held an important place.

Outside the Netherlands, photobooks about children were being produced by photographers such as Dominique Darbois, Edward Steichen, Hans Reich, and Wayne Miller. In the Netherlands, Oscar van Alphen made Kinderen in de grote stad (‘Children in the Big City’) in 1958. In the second half of the 1950s, people were also beginning to experiment with new combinations of image and text. In Argeloos begin, Nanny Snijders organised the photos as a visual narrative describing the growth of a child from a baby into a pubescent teenager, accompanied by a poetic text. Forming the basis of this book is the concept that a child enters the world as an unwritten page and is receptive to numerous impressions and gradually discovers himself. We see children who become completely caught up in their playing, children that dream, are frightened, sad, or angry. In every case, the children appear to be unaware of the photographer’s presence. These photos belong to the tradition of post-war humanism and convey an optimistic perspective on life.

Following Argeloos begin, which received a positive response from the press, Diepen en Snijders continued their collaboration in a similar manner in the magazine Ouders van nu (‘Parents of Now’). Usually, it was Snijders who came up with an idea. Diepen would then venture out and shoot several photos, with Snijders then basing her text on what she had found. They complemented each other, with the text and image forming a unity. The collaboration was extremely pleasurable for both women and the result enriched the magazine significantly, both content-wise and visually.

Diepen’s interest in photography arose at a very young age. Even though her father and her sister, Ciel, photographed on a frequent basis, Diepen was afraid that photography would prove to be too difficult for herself: there was no understanding all of the little numbers on the lens. In her work, Diepen has always simplified the technical aspects to the extreme. She considers her photography as a registration, rather than a means of expression in itself. Clever manipulations of a technical nature are never used to make her photos flattering. As Diepen’s eyes were unable to adjust to major light fluctuations in the darkroom, she soon hired Ria Basemans, a sixteen-year-old girl from Moergestel, as her assistant. Basemens learned how to enlarge photos, with Diepen always using the contact prints to indicate where the cropping was to be done.

As Diepen felt isolated in Tilburg, she eventually felt the desire to exchange her ideas with other photographers. In 1958, Martien Coppens brought her into contact with the NFK (Nederlandse Fotografen Kunstkring, ‘Netherlands Photographers Art Society’). This group, comprised chiefly of professional photographers, met on a regular basis. By discussing one another’s work and organising lectures and exhibitions, they hoped to advance the cause of photography. Weekends were also organised, with all venturing out to shoot photos and hold discussions. While Diepen enjoyed these contacts, she also observed that photographers in this group, with the majority working in a studio, had very little understanding for her journalistic approach.

Most of Diepen’s learning was therefore derived from examining the work of major reportage photographers outside the Netherlands. She purchased the books of photographers such as Robert Capa, Gotthard Schuh, and Nell Dorr, but also Henri Cartier-Bresson, whose texts she likewise found particularly appealing. In the book Images a la Sauvette (roughly ‘Images on the Run’) of 1952, Cartier-Bresson writes that one should never make waves in the water where one fishes (‘on ne fouette pas 1’eau avant de pêcher’) and that one has to walk with ‘velvety feet’ (‘faire patte de velours’). Diepen has always tried to put these two statements into practice. She learned to be patient in her work and to be present in a low-profile manner. She also discovered that openness, in the sense of being free of preconceived notions, is extremely important for a photographer. The credo she upheld for herself with every assignment was: ‘tabula rasa’ (Latin for ‘blank slate’).

Diepen was especially impressed by a number of statements made by Karl Pawek, the Austrian theologian and philosopher, in the magazine Magnum. Pawek wrote about ‘das Mehr an Wirklichkeit’ (‘the More in Reality’), conveying the notion that photographers see more than just external appearance and are therefore obliged to capturing and passing on what others are incapable of seeing. It was the same remark frequently professed by the chairman of the NFK, Meinard Woldringh. Likewise, the reportage photo was meant to be more than just an account of the facts. Pawek pointed out that photography can be an ‘Erkenntnismittel’, i.e. a means to achieving insight. Applying this ‘philosophy’, Diepen has always tried to capture that moment when the person portrayed is completely himself, consequently providing others with a degree of insight regarding that person. The intense manner in which Diepen sympathised with her ‘models’ is what elevated her above the average portrait photographer.

Diepen was approached by the supervisory board of the Stichting voor het Kind (‘Foundation of the Child’), after several of her photos had been shown by Dr. Van Meurs and Jack van Belle in a television programme about the punishment of children. Among the foundation’s tasks was the children’s postage stamp campaign. In 1964, the proceeds from this campaign were destined for the expansion of the ‘Huize Maria Roepaan’ in Ottersum (Limburg), a leading institution in the field of care for the mentally disabled. Diepen was asked to take fifty photos of the institute’s youngest inhabitants. In carrying out her assignment, she was assisted by the G. van der Most, a physician and the institute’s director, who was also an amateur photographer. The two spoke frequently together about photography. Van der Most was positive about Diepen’s work, but also critical. In his opinion, it could always be better. In this manner, Diepen was stimulated to achieve her very best. The hesitation that she initially experienced when photographing these children soon disappeared. She began mixing with the children—on ‘velvety feet’—and photographed their characteristic attitudes and expressions. With tremendous sensitivity, she emphasised what was plainly human. In doing so, she managed to portray these children in a manner that was disarming, and as a result, allowed people to see them just a bit differently. The photos were well received and the managing board of the Huize Maria Roepaan requested that Diepen take photos for a new brochure. Somewhat later, Van der Most approached her to collaborate on a photobook, with the text to be written by Van der Most and the orthopedagogue J. Fennis.

The sixty-six photos found in the book Dit kind… (‘This Child…’) are the product of a rigorous selection made from among 2,500 shots. The final result is a fortuitous combination of reportage and children’s photography. It took Diepen months to photograph these children. She was seeking simplicity in her photos and tried to achieve this by concentrating on the most significant matters. To respond quickly and to avoid having to think about aspects of technique, she used the same type of film and the same aperture consistently: only the exposure times varied. In doing so, she photographed several children in their own characteristic positions: the little boy behind glass, his small hands with the bent fingers held up in front of him, invokes a feeling of loneliness; the little girl, with just the crown of her head, her shoes and hands visible, looks as if she is completely shut up inside herself—an impression strengthened by the fact that she takes up the entire image.

With a refined sensitivity, Diepen managed to express what was normal—after all, these children also had their joy and sadness—and photographed them as personalities of worth. As such, the photos are more than just material for illustrations, but serve as a penetrating accompaniment to the text. A similar book by Ad Windig was released in the same year, entitled In het land der levenden (‘In the Land of the Living’), which also included photos of mentally disabled children and adults. The photos that Diepen took for Dit kind… are more intimate than those by Windig and reveal more about the person. Windig, by comparison, places greater emphasis on the everyday life of disabled people in an institution. Dit kind… received a significant amount of attention in newspapers, weeklies, family magazines, as well as medical and photography magazines.

Judging by the reviews, one can conclude that some feared a photobook depicting mentally disabled children would prove to be distasteful. Diepen put a decisive end to such fears. The book sold out quickly, with two subsequent editions following thereafter. As a result of its success, Diepen was asked to photograph on behalf of the Institute for the Blind in Grave and the Insitute for the Deaf in St. Michielsgestel. Even though the taboo on photographing the mentally disabled had in fact been broken by Diepen’s and Windig’s books, the post-war society of affluence in the Netherlands—with the elderly, disabled, and mentally insane hidden away in institutions—long remained guarded in its response to this theme.

It was not until the mid-1980s that Marrie Bot began to investigate this subject in greater depth. Her research resulted in the voluminous book Bezwaard bestaan. Foto ‘s en verhalen over verstandelijk gehandicapten (‘Troubled Existence. Photos and Stories about the Mentally Disabled, 1988). Ten years later, Erwin Olaf featured the mentally disabled in his confrontational glamour portraits, in order to show that these people were just as worthy as everyone else. With his exhibition and book, entitled Mind of their own (1995), Olaf broke the taboo on this genre of portraiture for good.

After the book Argeloos begin, Diepen felt a desire to immerse herself in another topic. Somewhat concerned about her health and reflecting on growing older, she decided to focus her camera on the elderly. She initially made visits to senior citizens’ homes, but was able to eventually ‘find’ them as well in parks and during her trips abroad. By observing them closely and sympathising with their world—like children, the elderly live in their own world—Diepen produced striking photos that delved deeper than a superficial meeting. Magazines, as well as the elderly themselves, showed an interest in these photos.

Another subject that drew Diepen’s interest was landscape photography. She would liked to have done more of this kind of work, but because there was no money to be made—there was no demand—it was too costly of an endeavour. In the landscape photos that Diepen has taken, one observes an eye for detail structure. Because these photos required more time to adjust the camera settings, she made deliberate use of depth of field, with the play of light also carefully chosen. Nevertheless, Diepen was unable to finish her landscape photos as a unified whole in her oeuvre that would have a significance equal to her own portrait work or that of the renowned NFK landscape photographers Meinard Woldringh and Wim Noordhoek.

About 1974, Diepen was obliged to change course. While she had grown accustomed to photographing children, knee problems began to occur that eventually prevented her from crouching down and making herself as small as her subjects. In around 1970, Jan van Haaren brought African sculpture to Diepen’s attention. Diepen was particularly enthused by the expressive power of the miniature sculptures, which she began to collect. African sculptures had the added advantage that they were affordable and took up little space.

Diepen’s collection grew and she began taking photos of these images on a regular basis. When photography began taking too much of her energy, she came up with the idea of compiling a catalogue of her collection of African art, accompanied by an exhibition. In 1990, this exhibition was held at the Africa Museum in Berg en Dal. The catalogue, with an introduction by Francois Nuyt, a Benedictine monk born in the Congo, was published by Diepen herself. She viewed the exhibition as an ideal way to end her career.

Rees Diepen always sympathised with her subjects based on a deep personal involvement. One could call her a ‘concerned photographer’. She was never satisfied with beautiful, idealised images, but tried instead to get to what she viewed as the core of her subject. The manner in which she photographed (disabled) children was original, refreshing, and greatly admired. Her vision was in line with the international, post-war philosophy of photography, as described by Karl Pawek. Her unpretentious observations of children fall within the tradition of humanistic photography. For a long time, Diepen remained one of the few people who had devoted attention to photographing the disabled child.


Primary bibliography

Rees Diepen, De natuurlijke kinderfoto, in Fotografie. Vakblad voor hel fotografisch ambacht 6 (1956) 3, p. 69-71 (met foto’s).

Nanny Snijders-Oomen (tekst) en Rees Diepen (foto’s), Argeloos Begin, Haarlem (De Toorts) 1961.

G. van der Most, J. Fennis (tekst) en Rees Diepen (foto’s), Dit Kind… Een confrontatie met ernstige zwakzinnigheid, Amersfoort (Roelofs van Goor) 1966; 2e druk 1967; (idem: Lochem (De Tijdstroom) 1973, 3e herz. dr.).

Renée Rommes (tekst) en Rees Diepen (foto’s), Spelen is een ernstige zaak, in Ouders van nu maart 1969, p. 6-9.

Rita Kohnstamm (tekst) en Rees Diepen (foto), Taalkennis, in Ouders van nu juli 1970, p. 64.

Ron van Empelen (tekst) en Rees Diepen (foto’s), Sensomotorische training: bij kinderen met leermoeilijkheden en motorische problemen, Lochem (Tijdstroom) 1980.

I.A. van Berckelaer-Onnes, A.W.M. Snijders-Oomen (red.) en Rees Diepen (foto’s), Autisme in ontwikkeling, Lisse (Swets & Zeitlinger) 1982.

Iris van Koetsveld, Marja Schiks (tekst) en Rees Diepen (foto’s), Kinderboeken. Leerlingenwerkboek, Den Haag (Stichting Nederlandse Onderwijs Televisie) 1982.

Francois Neyt (tekst) en Rees Diepen (foto’s), Miniatuur sculpturen van Zwart Afrika/Sculptures miniatures de 1’Afrique Noire, collectie-collection Rees Diepen, Tilburg (Rees Diepen) 1990.

Gerard Rooyakkers (tekst) en Rees Diepen (foto’s), Spelenderwijs, Zaltbommel (Kempen Uitgevers/Europese Bibliotheek) 2004.


N. Snijders-Oomen (tekst) en Rees Diepen (foto’s), artikelen in Ouders van nu:

De geschiedenis van een woord, november 1967, p. 26-29.

Jonge onderzoekers, december 1967, p. 22-25.

Avonturen achter tralies, januari 1968, p. 27-30.

Draai het wieltje nog maar eens om, maart 1968, p. 10-13.

Bad-feest, april 1968, p. 54-57.

Eenjaar oud, mei 1968, p. 42-45.

Zelf ontdekt, juni 1968, p. 46-49.

Geef ze de ruimte, juli 1968, p. 54-57.

Kleine jongens, oktober 1968, p. 68-71.

Sinterklaas en het kindergeweten, november 1968, p. 30-33.

Duimzuigen, november 1968, p. 70-73.

De kinderen en de winter, januari 1969, p. 28-31.

Slechthorende kinderen, maart 1969, p. 54-57.

Kiekeboe, mei 1969, p. 50-51.

Zand, water, lucht, eindeloos, juni 1969, p. 38-41.

Huisje bouwen, juli 1969, p. 58-59.

Speel-goed, september 1969, p. 70-72, 77.

Een kind is een persoonlijkheid, januari 1970, p. 74-77.

Dove kinderen: Praten is een wonder, juni 1970, p. 92-97.

Kind zijn is spelen, oktober 1970, p. 34-35.

Onecht, december 1970.

Autistisch gedrag bij kinderen, maart 1972, p. 94-99.


(foto ‘s in boeken, tijdschriften en ander drukwerk)

Affiche Aktie voor de algemene stichting dagverblijven voor gehandicapten te Kampen en omstreken, z.j.

Affiche Caritas Hulpbetoon, Brussel z.j.

Affiche Kinderbescherming, z.p., z.j.

Affiche Pauselijke missiewerken, Den Haag z.j.

Affiche St. Josefs-Stift für geistig Behinderte, Eisingen z.j.

Anoniem, Dan ligt rond ieder mens een ijzeren ring, adventsactie Welzijnszorg, Brussel (Uitgeverij Mens en Samenleving) z.j.

Folder Ir. C.J.M. Eijsbouts B.V., Adviesbureau voor organisatie en ontwikkeling, St. Michielsgestel, z.j.

jaarverslag Eti, z.j.

Jaarverslag Katholieke Hoge School voor Verplegenden, Nijmegen z.j.

Jaarverslag van de Krabbebossen, Rijsbergen, z.j.

Jaarverslag van de Stichting Kleuterheil, Goirle, z.j.

J. Nauta, Adoptie, Haarlem (De Toorts) z.j.

Lorna Wing, Autistische kinderen, Brochure Ouders van Nu, z.j.

Opvoeding 1955-1966.

N. Snijders-Oomen, Spelend voor Gods aangezicht, de godsdienstige opvoeding van het kind in de eerste zeven jaar, Den Haag (Pax) 1957 (idem: Den Bosch (Malmberg) 1966, 7de herz. dr.).

Dux 1957 t /m 1970.

Lambert Tegenbosch, Fotografie en werkelijkheid IV, in Fotografie. Vakblad voor het fotografisch ambacht 8 (1958) 3, p. 80-85.

Tijdschrift voor de mater-amabilis-scholen 4 (januari 1958) 1.

Tijdschrift voor de mater-amabilis-scholen 4 (april 1958) 4.

E.S.C., Margriet wil van ditte, in Okki 40 (1 november 1958) 3, p. 4-5.

A.A.F. Goossen en C. Veeneklaas, Psychologische verkenningen, Den Haag (Nijgh en Van Ditmar) 1959.

Anoniem [= J.M. Drent], De Peuter, Den Haag (Stichting K. en O./Opvoedingsvoorlichting) z.j. [ca. 1960], omslag.

N. Snijders-Oomen, Kleine kinderen worden groot. Kinderpsychologie voor opvoeders, Den Bosch (Malmberg) 1960, 8ste herz. dr. (en volgende drukken).

Samenspel. Contactblad van de zusters van de liefde 23 (februari 1960) 1.

Denken en doen. Maandblad der Nederlandse vereniging van huisvrouwen, 46 (juli/augustus 1962) 7, omslag.

Anoniem, Huize “Maria Roepaan” Ottersum, Arnhem (Drukkerij en Uitgeverij B. &W.) z.j. [1963].

Bejaardenwerk 1963 t /m 1968.

(Jaarverslagen] Stichting Sterken helpen zwakken. Ons werk in 1963-1967.

Kalenders 1964-1969. Katholiek Verbond voor Kinderbescherming, Den Bosch 1963-1968.

Jaarverslag Instituut voor Doven St. Michielsgestel 1964-1967, 1972-1974.

Folder Bejaardenwerk, Den Bosch z.j. [ca. 1964′].

Joep Munnichs, Ouderdom en eindigheid. Een bijdrage tot de psychogerontologie, Assen (Van Gorcum) 1964 [Proefschrift Nijmegen],

GJ. van de Top, Efficiëntie in hetjeugdwerk, in Vrije vaart. Maandblad van de Nederlandse jeugdgemeenschap 19 (juni 1964) 6, p. 84.

J.C. Schreuder, Als daar muziek voor is… Overwegingen over de ouderdom, Den Haag (Boekencentrum) 1965, omslag (serie: Praktisch theologische handboekjes, 27).

Max-Albert Wyss, Le portrait d’enfant, in Camera Internationale. La photographie appliquée 44 (1965) 2, p. 36, 37.

Het ernstig zwakzinnige kind, in Ziekenfonds Vragen. Maandblad van de bond van r.-k. ziekenfondsen in Nederland (16 mei 1965) 5.

Vakfotografie (1966) 3, omslag, p . 1 , 3-8, 11-20, 41-42.

Anoniem, De Wijnberg. [Katholiek Instituut voor visueel gehandicapten], Grave (De Wijnberg) z.j. [na 1966].

Prentbriefkaarten Kinderen in nood. Caritas-Hulpbetoon, Brussel (Cipra) [ca. 1967].

Het zorgenkind 1967 t /m 1976.

Ouders van nu 1967 t /m 1977.

AJ. Koers, Borstvoeding is beter, in Ouders van nu december 1967, p. 26-27.

T. van Benthem-de Boer, Brief aan ouders van jonge geestelijk gehandicapte kinderen, in Folder Levend monument voor Bisschop Bekkers: zorg voor dit kind, 1969.

Anoniem, Pedagoog: Het overbelaste schoolkind, in Dippy post. Gratis maandblad voor jonge moeders (april 1969) 3, p. 6-7.

Ouders van nu april 1969, omslag.

Hanneke van der Burg en Marian von der Dunk, Het zwakzinnige kind, in Ouders van Nu september 1969, p. 20-25, 68-69.

Ouders van nu november 1969, p. 76-79, 133.

Primo, blad voor kleuters en peuters, [jaren zeventig].

Catalogus Les enfants dans le monde. Biennale de la photographie, Mantes-la- Jolie 1970.

Kalender 1971 Wereldmissie, Ursulinen Missie Procuur, Boxtel 1970.

J.S., Dagelijks draven en dollen, in Ouders van nu september 1970, p. 118-121.

Jeugd en samenleving 1971 t/m 1980.

Kontakten 1971 t/m 1979.

G.O. van de Lashorst, Voetjes mag je niet voelen, in Ouders van nu augustus 1971, p. 86.

Hanneke van der Burg, Het verwerken van emoties, in Ouders van nu december 1971, p. 79-81.

Affiche Wereldoriëntatie, 1972-1973.

Onze taak 1972 t/m 1976.

L.A.C, van den Berg en A.M.L. Kortmann, Toevertrouwd aan jou, Den Haag (Nijgh en Van Ditmar) 1972.

J.J. Dumont en H. Cammaer (red.), Kind en jeugdige. Vandaag of morgen. Kernproblemen van de huidige opvoeding, Haarlem (De Toorts) 1972, omslag.

J.P.M. Fennis, Spelen met het zorgenkind, Den Bosch (Malmberg) 1972.

Jean Piaget. Praemium Erasmianum MCMLXX11 [uitgave t.g.v. de Erasmusprijs 1972], Amsterdam (Stichting Praemium Erasmianum) 1972.

Kalender 1973. KUVV [Katholieke Unie voor Verzorgenden en Verplegenden], Utrecht 1972.

Nieuwjaarskaart De Wijnberg, katholiek instituut voor visueel gehandicapten, Grave 1972.

J. Nieuwenhuis, Terwijl de boer slaapt; opvoeding van kleine gelovigen, Bilthoven (Ambo) 7..j. [1973], 3de druk,

omslag (idem: volgende drukken). N.S.-O. (= Nanny Snijders-Oomen), Het nieuwe zusje, in Margriet (5-11 augustus 1972) 32, p. 8-11.

Anoniem, Proefboerderij van onderwijsvernieuwing voor werkende jongeren. Experimenteel streekcentrum te Tilburg, in Uitleg. “Weekblad van het Departement van Onderwijs en Wetenschappen (13 september 1972) 297, omslag, p. 6-9.

Anoniem, Kom jij ook over de brug?, in Klap 119(1 december 1972) 702, p. 13.

Peter van Amstel en Piet Scholten, Jouw beurt. Leerlingenboek, Den Haag (Stichting Nederlandse Onderwijs Televisie) 1976, p. 13-14.

Ad van Gennep, Het recht van de zwakste. Nieuwe lijnen in de zwakzinnigenzorg, Meppel etc. (Boom) 1976, omslag.

Dinke van Damme, Nederland is ver achterop met zorg voor het autistische kind, in Elseviers magazine 32 (14 augustus 1976) 33, p. 16-18.

Margo McCaffery, De verpleegkundige zorg voor patiënten met pijn, Lochem (De Tijdstroom) 1977, omslag.

L.J. Arts (e.a.), Meer begrip voor buitenbeentjes. Kinderen met leer-, ontwikkelings- en gedragsmoeilijkheden ten gevolge van een lichte hersenfunctiestoornis (M.B.D.), Lochem etc. (De Tijdstroom) 1979.

Kalender 1981 Welzijnszorg, Brussel 1980.

R. van Empelen, Sensomotorische training, Lochem etc. (De Tijdstroom) 1982, 2de herz. dr.

Kalender 1984 Welzijnszorg, Brussel 1983.

H. Colin Davis, Onze mond… een levende machine, Rotterdam (Nederlandse Unilever Bedrijven) 1985.

Colet van der Ven, Marieklaar, in Trouw 10 december 1994.

de Volkskrant 19 september 2002.

Secondary bibliography

Catalogus tent. Rees Diepen, Tilburg (Brabantse Stichting voor Beeldende Kunst en Edelambacht) 1960.

H (= Hellie de Haan), Foto-Tentoonstelling Rees Diepen, in Ons Werk. Maandblad Katholiek Vrouwengilde Tilburg maart 1960, p. 64.

H. de H.O., Fototentoonstelling Rees Diepen, in K.J. V. maart 1960.

Anoniem, Foto’s van Rees Diepen in Tilburg geëxposeerd, in Brabants Dagblad 21 maart 1960, p. 1, 3.

Anoniem, Kinderfoto’s van Rees Diepen in Brabants Edelambachtshuis, in Nieuwe Tilburgse Courant 21 maart 1960.

Anoniem, Het wezenlijke van het kind in foto’s van Rees Diepen, in Nieuwsblad van het Zuiden 22 maart 1960.

Anoniem, Tentoonstelling Rees Diepen, in Nieuwe Eindhovense Courant 26 maart 1960.

Anoniem, Rees Diepen exposeert kinderfoto’s van ‘t beste soort, in Oost Brabant 26 maart 1960, p. 4.

Joost Andriessen, Rees Diepen: Zo zijn kinderen, in Algemeen Handelsblad 2 april 1960 (met foto’s).

Anoniem, Kinderfoto’s, Rees Diepen exposeert in Tilburg, in De Tijd-Maasbode 8 april 1960.

Leo Nouwen, Rees Diepen: Gevoelige Kinderfotografie, in Eindhovens Dagblad 9 april 1960.

Joost Andriessen, Rees Diepen: kinderen fotograferen in hun eigen wereldje, in Foto 15 (mei 1960) 5, p. 218-223 (met foto’s).

Anoniem, De mens achter flitslamp en lens, werk van jongeren, in Elseviers Weekblad 7 mei 1960, p. 61.

J.D. v.d. Harten, Kunst in Brabant ontstaan. Groepstentoonstellingen in Tilburg en Helmond, in De Tijd-Maasbode 12 mei 1960.

Lien Salden, Gedachtenspel bij foto’s van Rees Diepen, in Het blad van nu 14 mei 1960. p. 264-265 (met foto’s).

A. Goossen, Argeloos Begin, in Mozaïek december 1961.

Anoniem, Argeloos Begin, in Ons Werk, Maandblad van het Katholieke Vrouwengilde december 1961.

bm., Argeloos Begin, in Scapulier december 1961, p. 220.

Jan Starink, Argeloos Begin, kostelijk prentenboek, in Het Nieuwsblad van het Zuiden 16 december 1961 (met foto’s).

Anoniem, Argeloos Begin, in De Stem 16 december 1961.

J.A., Op de boekenplank. Argeloos begin – Kinderfoto’s van Rees Diepen, in Algemeen Handelsblad 19 december 1961.

M. Macintosh, Argeloos Begin, in Ons Gezin januari 1962, p. 16-17 (met foto’s).

Lien Salden, Argeloos begin. Rees Diepen ziet “het kleine diertje” anders dan anders, in Hel Binnenhof 13 januari 1962, p. 11 (met foto’s).

Hans Ks. (= Hans Kessens), Argeloos Begin en Kinderen van verre en nabij. Kinderen voor de lens, in Brabants Dagblad 27 januari 1962.

H.M. Dresen-Coendcrs, Boekbespreking, in Opvoeding februari 1962, p. 64.

M.E., Argeloos Begin , in De R.K. Kleuterschool februari 1962.

M. van Elsberg-Kiewied, Argeloos Begin, in Dux maart 1962.

P. van Alkemade, Argeloos Begin, in Streven 1 maart 1962.

M., Argeloos begin: Expositie kinderfoto’s, in De Stem 3 maart 1962.

Anoniem, Rees Diepen ziet “het kleine diertje” anders dan anders, in Twentsche Courant 30 maart 1962 (met foto’s).

R. Nieman, Argeloos Begin, in Elseviers Weekblad 31 maart 1962.

Anoniem, Argeloos Begin, in Gawein april 1962.

Anoniem, Argeloos Begin, in De Linie 28 april 1962.

Anoniem, Argeloos Begin, Poëtische fototentoonstelling in Museum Ouders en Opvoeders, in Nieuwe Schiedamse Courant 28 april 1962.

Anoniem, Argeloos Begin, Poëtische fototentoonstelling in Museum Ouders en Opvoeders, in De Tijd-Maasbode 28 april 1962.

Anoniem, Argeloos Begin, in Nieuwe Rotterdamsche Courant 28 april 1962.

Anoniem, Expositie over het kinderlijk beleven, in Rotterdams Parool 28 april 1962.

Anoniem, Zaterdag 28 april 1962

Argeloos begin geopend, in Rotterdams Nieuwsblad 29 april 1962.

Anoniem, Argeloos Begin, in Huwelijk en Huisgezin mei 1962.

Anoniem, Landelijk voorlichtingscentrum voor ouders en opvoeders, Tentoonstelling, in Tijdschrift voor Kinderverzorgingen Oudervoorlichting mei 1962.

Anoniem, Tentoonstelling in Rotterdam Argeloos Begin, in de Volkskrant 2 mei 1962.

Anoniem, Argeloos Begin, in De Gelderlander 24 mei 1962.

Anoniem, Argeloos Begin, in O.N. Post 1 juni 1962.

Anoniem, Argeloos Begin, in Rotonde 11 augustus 1962.

Anoniem, Argeloos Begin: Expositie kinderfoto’s, in De Stem 3 maart 1963.

H.P., Tentoonstelling in Hotel Central. Fotografen Cees Nouwens en Rees Diepen tonen hun werk, in Brabants Dagblad 18 mei 1963, p. 2.

D.H., De Nederlandse Fotografen Kring biedt een belangrijke tentoonstelling voor u in Nijmegen, in Foto 18 (juni 1963) 6 p. 317-318.

R. Nieman, Kunstkritiek in het kort, NFK zestig jaar, in Elseviers Weekblad 29 juni 1963, p. 23.

Anoniem, In de Waag, Nijmegen, in Focus 48 (5 juli 1963) 14, p. 19.

Anoniem, Argeloos Begin, in Tijdschrift voor Kinderverzorging en Oudervoorlichting (mei 1964) 2.

Anneke Kinket, Rees Diepen: twee grote sympathieën, in Het Vrije Volk 31 oktober 1964, p. 3 (met foto’s).

C. (= Professor Calon), Dit kind, in Zwakzinnigenzorg z.j. [1966].

J. Hoeing, Dit kind, in Maandblad voor Geestelijke Volksgezondheid z.j. [1966].

Rfs., Dit kind, in Trouw 12 december 1966.

v.H. (=Jan van Haaren), Dit kind, in Opvoeding januari 1967.

Hans Kessens, Leven met zwakzinnigheid, in Brabants Dagblad 28 januari 1967, p.I.

Hans Kessens, Portret van een fotografe, Rees Diepen, in Brabants Dagblad 28 januari 1967 p. I.

Anoniem, Dit kind, deze ouders: zo onbegrepen, in Libelle (28januari 1967) 4, p. 33.

E. Salden-Campfens, Dit kind, in Doorkijk februari 1967, p. 8-9 (met foto’s).

Anoniem, Boeken over “onze kinderen”, in Onze ‘Taak februari 1967, p. 3.

Caspar Oddens, Boekbespreking, in Het Zorgenkind februari 1967, p. 10-11.

I.A., Tijd voor een boek, “Dit Kind”, in De. Tijd-Maasbode (20 februari 1967).

Anoniem, Ecce Homo, in De Standaard 24 maart 1967.

H. de Haan-Olsen, Dit Kind, in Kerknieuws Rooms Leven 31 maart 1967.

K. Pels, Dit Kind, in Gezondheidszorg april 1967.

B., Dit kind…, in Wij vrouwen van het land april 1967, p. 14.

T. Pouwels, Boekbespreking, in Tijdschrift voor Ziekenverpleging 1 5 april 1967, p. 303-304.

Jea Kiers, Schokkend verhaal over het zwakzinnige kind, in Het Vrije Volk 19 april 1967, p. 10 (met foto’s).

Wim Aerts, Zwakzinnigheid, Geen straf voor de zonden der vaderen, in Dagblad voor Noord-Limburg 1 mei 1967 (met foto’s).

E.C.M. Frijling-Schröder, Dit kind, in Nederlands Tijdschrift voor Geneeskunde 13 mei 1967, p. 19.

L.v.M., Geestelijk gestoorde kind in beeld, Twee fotoboeken over zwakzinnigheid, in de Volkskrant 24 mei 1967 (met foto’s).

Peter van Campen, Dit kind…, Een belangrijke publicatie over het zwakzinnige kind, in Op de Uitkijk juni 1967, p. 326-330 (met foto’s).

M.S., Dit kind, in Tijdschrift voor Maatschappelijk Werk 20 juni 1967.

Maps Valk, Dit kind, in Elseviers Weekblad 15 juli 1967.

W.G. Rutgers van der Loeff-Manschot, Dit kind, in Huisarts en Wetenschap augustus 1967.

Dick Boer, Nieuwe boeken. Dit kind, in Focus 52 (1 september 1967) 18, p. 30.

dh, Van de redacteur, in Foto 322 (december 1967) 12, p. 589.

F.F. Hazelhoff, Dit kind … Foto’s van Rees Diepen uit dit kind, in Foto 22 (december 1967) 1 2, p. 590-593 (met foto’s).

Anoniem, Boekbespreking, in Spreekuur thuis december 1967, p. 90.

R.G. (= Ruud Groen), Rees Diepen in Galerie Vaesheim, Indrukwekkende foto’s van kinderen en bejaarden, in Eindhovens Dagblad 12 maart 1968, p. 9.

R.G. (= Ruud Groen), Pure foto’s van Rees Diepen in Galerie Vaesheim, in Nieuwsblad van het Zuiden 13 maart 1968.

Anoniem, Dit Kind, in Onze Taak maartapril 1973.

P. Heydendael, Dit kind, in Tijdschrift voor Sociale Geneeskunde (1974) 4, p. 152.

Anoniem, drs. Rees Diepen, in Robert Schillemans en Chris Bergman (samenstelling), Dokumentatie Beeldende Kunstenaars. Stadsgewest Tilburg, Tilburg (Kultureel sentrum De Koningswei) 1977 (met foto’s).

Els Barents (red.), Fotografie in Nederland 1940-1975, Den Haag (Staatsuitgeverij) 1978, p. 98, losse biografie.

Chris Bergman, Kunstjournaal. Rees Diepen, in Nieuwsblad van het Zuiden 3 oktober 1979, p. 7.

Herman Hoeneveld, Keuze Kalender. Bewondering voor medemens, in Kunstbeeld december 1985 (met foto’s).

I.V. [= I. Vogelzang], Miniatuur sculpturen van Zwart Afrika. De collectie Rees Diepen, in Nieuwsbrief. Vereniging van Vrienden van Ethnografica (mei 1990) 32, p. 24-26.

Anoniem, Sculptures Miniatures d’Afrique Noire, in Arts d’Afrique Noire (1990) 75.

Joep Eijkens, Rees Diepen verbreekt de stilte. Tilburgse fotografe exposeert in Afrika Museum, in Hel Nieuwsblad 25 april 1990, p. 9.

Jan Coppens (samenstelling), Rees Diepen, een betrokken fotografe, Eindhoven (Stichting Brabants Fotoarchief) 2000.

Theo Cuijpers en Ottie Thiers, De 30.000 kinderen van Rees Diepen. In gesprek met een onzichtbare fotografe, in Noord Brabants Historisch Nieuwsblad 14 (december 2000-januari 2001) 6, p. 18-24 (met foto’s).

Joep Eijkens, De kinderen van fotografe Rees Diepen, in Brabants Dagblad 23 december 2000.

José Vorstenbosch, ‘Ik wil in hun wereld komen’. Kinderfoto’s van Rees Diepen, in De Bazuin. Weekblad voor katholieken en zoekenden naar de waarheid 84 (20 april 2001) 8, p. 24-26 (met foto’s).

Anoniem, Kinderfoto’s in Limburgs Museum. Expositie fotografe Rees Diepen, in E3 Journaal Zuid 21 augustus 2002.

Anoniem, Baanbrekende kinderportretten, in Spits 22 augustus 2002.

Irene Verhiel, Kinderen in hun eigen wereld, in Dagblad De Limburger 30 augustus 2002.

Anoniem, Limburgs Museum: Rees Diepen, een betrokken fotografe, in Vizier 4 (september 2002) 3.

Joep Eijkens, Pronkstuk, in Brabants Dagblad 5 september 2002.

Ingeborg Th. Leijerzapf en Doris Wintgens Hötte, Foto’s van Vijftig. De jaren vijftig volgens de foto’s van het Prentenkabinet van de Universiteit Leiden, Amsterdam (Voetnoot) 2003, p. 29, 141.


Brabantse Stichting voor Beeldende Kunst en Edelambacht, vanaf 1959.

NFK, 1960-1965.


1960 (e) Tilburg, Brabantse Stichting voor Beeldende Kunst en Edelambacht [Spoorlaan 13a], Foto’s van Rees Diepen.

1960 (g) Tilburg, Paleis-Raadhuis, [tentoonstelling Brabantse Stichting voor Beeldende Kunst en Edelambacht].

1961 (g) Amsterdam, Arti et Amicitiae, 20e Internationale Focus Salon [NFK inzending].

1962 (e) Rotterdam, Landelijk Voorlichtingscentrum voor Ouders en Opvoeders, Argeloos Begin.

1963 (e) Breda, Boekhandel Oomens, Argeloos Begin.

1963 (g) Den Bosch, Hotel Central, [Cees Nouwens en Rees Diepen].

1963 (g) Nijmegen, De Waag, [tentoonstelling NFK].

1968 (e) Vessem, Galerie Vaesheim, Rees Diepen.

1970 (g) Mantes-la-Jolie, Les enfants dans le monde (Biennale de la photographie).

1978/1979 (g) Amsterdam, Stedelijk Museum, Fotografie in Nederland 1940-1975.

1979 (e) Tilburg, AMRO-bank [Conservatoriumlaan 10].

1985/1986 (e) Eindhoven, Galerie Pennings, Rees Diepen.

1990 (e) Bergen Dal, Afrikamuseum, Miniatuur Sculpturen van Zwart Afrika, de collectie Rees Diepen [beelden en foto’s].

2002 (e) Venlo, Limburgs Museum, Kinderfotografie Rees Diepen uit de periode 1954-1972.

2003 (g) Leiden, Stedelijk Museum De Lakenhal, Foto’s van Vijftig. De jaren vijftig volgens de foto ‘s van het Prentenkabinet van de Universiteit Leiden.

Radio and television programs

1962 (15 mei) Onder Ons (KRO-radio).

1962 (november) Dr. Van Meurs en Jack van Belle over het straffen van kinderen; programma met foto’s van Rees Diepen (VARA-televisie).

1967 (11 april) Moeders wil is wet (KROradio).

1967 (20 januari) Onder de hoogtezon Dr. J. Veerman (NCRV-radio).

1969 (mei) Mies Bouwman, Een levend monument voor Mgr.W. Bekkers [pauze- en affichefoto] (televisie).

1972 (20 oktober) Recht en slecht, Mr.Dr. Benno Stokvis (NOS-radio).

1975 (januari) In gesprek met een bisschop Mgr.J. Bluyssen (KRO-televisie).


Leiden, Studie en Documentatie Centrum voor Fotografie, Prentenkabinet Universiteitsbibliotheek Leiden.

Tilburg, Rees Diepen, documentatie en mondelinge informatie.


Amsterdam, Internationaal Instituut voor Sociale Geschiedenis.

Amsterdam, Stedelijk Museum.

Geldrop, St. Annaziekenhuis.

Leiden, Prentenkabinet Universiteitsbibliotheek Leiden.

Tilburg, Gemeentehuis.

Tilburg, Stichting Brabants Fotoarchief.

Venlo, Gemeentemuseum.

Weert, Sint lans Gasthuis.