Do you know about niksen? No, it is neither a phone nor a fad superfood.

In the Netherlands, it is the expression of an art. The art of doing nothing and, by extension, the good life. This softness is palpable in the choice of pastel colors and the feeling of harmony that emerges from the joyful symmetry of the elements of the image.

This illustration takes up the codes typically associated with the Netherlands: the blue of traditional designs in blue and white, the iconic little houses with large windows, the bicycle wheels, the  tulips …

The character is a man in a suit and tie, the kind of person you would imagine to be an office worker or manager without fixed hours. The kind of person you imagine following directives, a schedule or a task list in an environment that leaves little room for spontaneity.

Our gaze is drawn to the cloud which floats above him. The contents of his mind have risen to it, following the path made by a small fan. Inside the cloud, the cogwheel shows that his brain is “working.”

This man has his “head in the clouds.” By indulging in niksen, he allows his mind to wander. It “aerates,” like that of a person on a hike without a predefined route. He thus rediscovers that he too can be creative and spontaneous, and experience a feeling of blissful fullness, of inner richness.