Touching individuals and communities




H2H is starting a new project in Beirut, Lebanon

The project in sum

  • A performance
    including a dance choreographed by Ahmad Joudeh, performed by Marloes
    Music and spoken word/poetry by several Lebanese musicians
  • Art- and movement based trauma therapy workshops in collaboration with local NGO’s
  • Community art events

The project is the start of a long term collaboration.

For more info about the project and how you can support it, you can click here.



The main thing is to be moved, to love, to hope, to tremble, to live.

August Rodin


HeartToHard (H2H) is an international arts for social transformation platform. It has the mission to invite and inspire individuals/communities to live, act, speak wholeheartedly and to address structural injustices or personal blocks that prevent them from living an abundant life.

H2H aims to bring He (Inspirator/spirituality), Art, and Heart (compassion) to places that are hardened and in need to be touched and transformed by Beauty. The mission in based on the belief that intuition and creativity facilitate the growth of imagination, which lays as a dormant seed inside of us. The result of this growth is that we start to break out into new territory, and to give birth to new ways of seeing ourselves, others and the world.

The focus on ‘hard places’ refers to: parts of our heart’s landscape that are barren; nations that are affected by adversity (e.g. natural hazards/conflict) and where loss and grief left the population with little hope; communities where internal conflicts, discrimination, and social exclusion takes place; or schools were bullying is widespread.

The portal of healing and creativity always takes us into the realm of the spirit.
Art opens the closets, airs out the cellars and attics. It brings healing.

Angeles Arrien & Julia Cameron
Together stronger

In Action

The mission to bring hope, life and awakening to hardened places is operationalized through projects in the Netherlands, Hong Kong, China, Nepal, USA, and Lebanon.


Every storm has an Eye. A resting place. Intuition and creativity help us to find this Eye of the storm and to move within Its coverage. In Him, the Creator of it all, we find our resting place.

In the media


Vrouwelijke pionier in Hong Kong

By Linda Stelma, “Dag6”, November 2017

“In 2012 ben ik in Hongkong gaan wonen omdat ik een competitieve PhD onderzoeksbeurs won en de kans wilde benutten. Ik raakte al snel betrokken bij artistieke projecten en ging vanaf 2014ook zelf dansvoorstellingen neerzetten. Sinds eind vorig jaar pendel ik heen en weer tussen Nederland, China en Hongkong”.

“De dingen waar je in Nederland om gewaardeerd wordt, zoals directheid, oplossingsgerichtheid en een pionierende geest, kunnen in Hongkong als iets negatief worden gezien. Je hebt er juist een indirecte cultuur en er wordt veel impliciet gezegd met de ogen. Doordat…”

Meer lezen…


The VoyageDiversity is not a treat but a powerful resource

By Kathleen Ferrier in “Het Nieuwe Wij”

Kathleen Ferrier, former member of the Dutch House of Representatives, published a meaningful article on cultural diversity, in which the Hong Kong – Netherlands art dialogue (initiated by H2H’s founder) and its “Peer to Pier” female dance artist project were used as a case study example.

“In the performance The Voyage and the Peer to Pier project women from Hong Kong and the Netherlands share experiences about personal growth, challenges and their answers to difficulties, but also their dreams. It was the mix of cultures and backgrounds that gave vitality to the show. It showcased that diversity is not a threat but a powerful resource”.

Photo at presentation Education and learning environments tailor made to breed female leadership - HKUWAEducation and learning environments tailor made to breed female leadership

December 2014

In December 2014, Marloes won the Hong Kong University Women Award of the HK Association of University Woman ( She was asked to give a speech for the Hong Kong public. Below you will find the links to the short and full version of the speech
“Education and learning environments tailor made to breed female leadership”. Accompanied with the used presentation.

Shortened speach (PDF)
Full speach (PDF)
Presentation (PDF)

Heart2Hard - Photo by Ruben TimmanHeart2Hard - Photo by Ruben TimmanDutch Students Artfully Supporting Hong Kong’s Peace and Democracy Activists

October 16, 2014, The Voice Project

Article link


Report Conference Proceedings – Promoting the Social Emotional Aspects of Education


University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Education, Department of Preschool Education Houten, M. van & L.J.A. Vriens (2012), A Complex Peace Education Project: The Utrecht Summer school Education For Peace and Human Rights. Conference Report, European Network of Affective Education, May 2012, pp. 200-214.
Report link (pdf)

5. Peer-reviewed Journal of Peace Education and Social Justice

September 9, 2011

In Factis Pax Youth Actors in Peace and Human Rights Education, Infactispax peer-reviewed Journal of Peace Education and Social Justice, September 9, 2011.
Article link (pdf)

The arts are words spoken in multiple forms and shapes, with the ability to create beauty, to discern and uncover injustices. True beauty changes everything; no one can resist Her.



Marloes van Houten

Dr. Marloes van Houten

Dr. Marloes van Houten (1982) is a Dutch art director, professional dancer, choreographer and movement educator. She holds a PhD in trauma healing. While raised in the Netherlands, she lived, performed, led projects globally, also in crisis areas where war, conflict or natural disasters took place.

Full biography



I see the arts as a powerful tool to deliver a message, a means to inquire and work with personal and community challenges, and as a participatory resource to explore options for change.

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