A true collector is an artist in square. He chooses images and hangs them on the wall in other words he paints a collection for himself.
"The Dutch art collector should be added without delay to the list of protected species", is an assumption one can frequently hear nowadays. Research on the motives, backgrounds and choices of Dutch collectors of modern and contemporary art is a very actual theme in the Netherlands. (see for instance: R.Steenbergen, Iets dat zoveel kost, is alles waard. Verzamelaars van moderne en hedendaagse kunst in Nederland. Amsterdam 2002).
It appears that their interest in the visual arts usually starts during childhood or student years, but chance meeting with artists or other collectors can also be crucial. A demanding or narrowly focused career has to be compensated by the intellectual and spiritual enjoyment collectors find in building up a collection of art. After some years of collecting, the relationship with art becomes a very physical one; collectors literally live in the middle of their collection. As a consequence, it becomes interwoven with their lifestory, they feel a remarkable sense of attachment towards art; it will function as a journal or biography. Most of these collectors are an invisible driving force in the Dutch art world. They occupy a key economic and cultural position, one they only rarely claim to and for which they do not enjoy recognition. All in all, these collectors are indispensable for Dutch modern and contemporary art. The above description truly applies for gynaecologist Dr. Karel Fauser; already as a young student he became close friends with Dutch artist Gérard Grassère (1915-1993) who introduced him to the world of art, and helped him acquiring his first works of art from for instance Otto van Rees(1884-1957). Soon after Fauser stood on his own feet as a collector and he developed a very peronal taste. Meeting Jan Dibbets(B.1941) in Enschede in the sixties, were both he and Dibbets lived, had a crucial effect on Fauser. Dibbets was in contact with some of the artists of the so called Nieuwe Figuratie and introduced Fauser to some of them. Works of the Nieuwe Figuratie were to become the heart of the Fauser collection, including key works from artists like Reinier Lucassen, Etienne Elias, Alfons Freymuth and Roger Raveel. Fauser frequented both the artists (and like a true mecenas, sometimes helped them out) and their main gallery, Espace in Amsterdam, led by its inspiring owner Eva Bendien. But Fauser was not narrow focused, he never stopped seeking for new inspirations. As always exploring the art world for quality, during the 80ties and 90ties he also started collecting works from 'cutting-edge' artists like René Daniels, Rob Birza, Robert Zandvliet or Carel Visser. In retrospect the Fauser collection is both diverse and coherent. It is a reflection of a life of collecting, art of the highest quality, without compromises. Karel Fauser is no trophy hunter, but judges every acquisition on its own qualities. This way of collecting brought him a collection full of trophies, in the end.