Trix Rijpkema studied art and textile at the teacher training college in Arnhem, The Netherlands. She also participated in courses in experimental and in reproduction techniques. Till 1986 she worked  as an art and textile teacher at several high schools and at a school of art. Thereafter, she could fully dedicate herself to painting using mixed techniques on canvas and paper.

She developed rapidly. The figurines, that had been inspired by ancient Namibian  rock paintings, became gradually more abstract. The earth colours, however, remained to be used, often together with deep blues. Trix Rijpkema works with various sorts of paper, paint, graphite and pure pigment, in most cases on canvas. Every painting consists of many layers, which explains why the observer of her work may notice a certain stratification: the paintings get depth and appear to be full of surprises. What the observer sees in a particular painting is determined by his position and expectations. Altogether this results in a particular atmosphere and contributes to the realisation of the main theme in her work: the moving human in an unknown and sometimes threatening environment.

Recently, Trix Rijpkema has been investigating the borders between abstract and figurative art: when is there still a recognizable shape and when is the painting purely abstract? But, in all cases there is action, both in the lines as in the "figurines".