Tale of twin 70-year-old Dutch prostitutes

Tale of twin 70-year-old Dutch prostitutes

 Louise and Martine Fokkens, the 70-year-old twin Dutch sisters living on the outskirts of Amsterdam, have spent most of their lives doing two things -- painting and prostitution.
The Fokkens shot to fame overnight when a documentary featuring their lives premiered at a Dutch film festival last November, Xinhua reported.

Later, a memoir of their career spanning over 50 years at the famous Red Light district in the heart of Amsterdam also turned out to be a best-seller.

They have kept their colourful paintings to themselves for decades. Although they had a small exhibition at a local church in 1995, when neither its organiser nor visitors had been aware of their full-time job.

"For us, painting is a sort of escape, not from our work but from everything that is around. I can paint all day long, and I feel satisfied when I finish," said Louise who is a more professional painter than her sister Martine.

"When our mother died, I painted her grave with flowers on it, and it gave me the opportunity to express my sad feelings," Louise said.

She said she often needed Martine to be around her when focusing on one painting, otherwise she would feel nervous.

The twin sisters learned painting from their painter uncle in childhood. Their family also had a tradition of playing violin as well as other musical instruments.

Living now with two Chihuahuas dogs outside the city, Martine still commutes to work by tram thrice a week. She makes money as the "oldest window girl" in the district where hundreds of brothels attracts millions of tourists annually.

"Martine needs the money to get by, and our old clients also need her. We feel like growing old together with them," Louise said, who quit the profession about a year ago due to health issues.

Prostitution was legalised and regulated in the Netherlands over a decade ago.

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