Posts Tagged With: Art

Hat’s off (Or: Artwork on a restaurant wall)

Today’s picture is of art on the side of a small restaurant:

Chapeau is the word for hat in French. Hat’s off! (petje eraf in Dutch)

Interestingly this artwork is on the side of a restaurant which sells Italian pizza and Turkish food like shoarma. Not French food.

Looking for your feel good article of the day? I really enjoyed this article from The Guardian: Taiwan grandparents go viral on Instagram modelling abandoned clothes. It’s exactly as it sounds. It’s the perfect article to forget about the rest of the craziness going on these days.

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Small Dutch streets (Or: A look down Korte Koediefstraat)

Today’s photo comes from the Korte Koediefstraat, or Short Cow thief street. No joke. I posted about the nearby Koediefstraat a few weeks back, if you want to read about why the street is called that.

In other news:

  • you can take part in Quarantinekunst or Quarantine art. Artists have been placing artwork in their windows or garden, visible from the public street. Non-artists have offered up their windows and gardens for someone else’s art to be put on display. You can also donate to the cause. See the map of where the pieces of art can currently be found.
  • 68,759 people have been tested for the corona virus so far under The Netherlands’ policy of now testing any resident who requests it. This period is from 1 June to 9 June (yesterday). Most test results come back in 48 hours, although the original promise was to have test results within 24 hours. About 2.1% of the tests have come back positive. See also the NOS live blog from today.
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Past, present, future (Or: Poetry about the coronavirus)

Last week Marco and I noticed another poem hanging on the wall of one of the buildings in the city centre:

It’s also on the Grote Markt, across the street from MediaMarkt at the Lust poffertjes restaurant (Instagram | Facebook). In English it reads:

A while ago there was war and occupation here
Even so peace, freedom and joy returned
The sun always came back from behind the clouds
Every time
This will happen again now, we don’t know when
but it will happen for sure

We live in the now
With the joy from before
And the hope for tomorrow
The sun will come again

The Hague,
Annette, 90 years

I blogged about a previous poem at the same location last month.

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Watching you (Or: Art down a side street in The Hague)

Here is another random piece of art which I spotted at the end of a side street in The Hague:

And of course since it is the Netherlands you get to see a lot of bikes on each side of the alleyway. This is Bagijnestraat, a small side street off of the popular Lange Poten street, which includes stores, cafés and even the Tweede Kamer (House of Representatives).

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Time to steal some cows (Or: Random side street in The Hague)

I’ve always wanted to write a blog post about this street!

Every time I walk past this street I have to laugh, but it seems so silly. The name of the street is Koediefstraat, which translates to Cow thief street. Hahaha. I’ll admit I had images of someone dragging an unwilling cow down this street while being chased by an unhappy army of Dutchies wielding pitchforks. But alas, the reason is a bit different.

If you go to the Haags Gemeentearchief website (The Hague city archive) and search for Koediefstraat, you’ll get two results for from the Straatnamencollectie, or the street name collection. The street had a few different names in the last 500+ years. One was Kromme Poten or Crooked legs but I’m not sure why. It was also named Wijnstraat or Wine street for a while due to the winery in the area. Another name was Burenstraat which was a reference to someone living in the area in the 1650s: Jacob van Buuren.

But the current name, Koediefstraat is likely a reference to Adriaan Janszoon Colijn whose nickname was Coedyff, which had a similar pronunciation to Koedief.

Also interesting to note: the painting on the side of the wall appeared recently; I don’t remember seeing it before. It caught my eye and reminded me that I wanted to do a blog post over the street name. There was no trace of it on Google Maps, whose most recent image was from June 2018.

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Spiegel, spiegel aan de wand (Or: Poetry about the coronavirus)

Marco spotted this poem on the side of a building in The Hague city centre. It’s across from the MediaMarkt (to the left of the photo is the Rootz restaurant).

In English it reads:

Mirror, mirror on the wall
I want to walk on the beach, hand in hand

I want to greet people on the street
and give a hug to the neighbor
with whom I talk

I want to eat something with others
without having to measure 1.5 meters

I want to look at how the tulips bloom
and stand in line for a party

I want to enjoy the spring sun
and walk with friends around the block

But for now we need to call each other
and be nice, even if it is with a small gesture

And then—before we know it—
we’ll be with each other again…

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Art in the city centre (Or: Heaven holds a sense of wonder)

The Hague is home to many pieces of art, especially in the city centre. One of those is is called Heaven holds a sense of wonder by the artist Femke van Wijk.

It is a bronze sculpture created in 2011. You can find it on the Kalvermarkt – to the right is the Kalvermarkt-Stadhuis tram stop and in the background is the Primark retail store. In the distance is the Grote Marktstraat, a large shopping area.

A close up of the crown:

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A day out (Or: Hoog Catharijne mall in Utrecht)

A few weeks ago Marco and I went to Utrecht for half a day. It’s about a 45 minute train ride – when the trains ride properly anyway. There were some issues that day, so I think it took about an hour and a half to get there. Opps! It’s a city in the middle of the Netherlands with about 350,000 residents.

The main reason for this trip was to visit the Hoog Catharijne mall, which has probably been under renovation for years. At least it seemed that way. I don’t think it is completely done, but the parts that are done look really good. Check it out:

The area between the mall (pictured) and the station (behind us) is semi-covered by the artistic roof above, although Marco says it doesn’t help 100% when it rains on a windy day. Ha!
Inside the mall – looking down on one of the wings. The pretty big for Dutch standards (about 42,000 square meters) but American malls are generally larger.

And just outside the mall in one of the canals is a piece of art: a whale made of plastic. Of course, a statement on plastic in the oceans.

And a close-up look at the whale from the front:

In the background you can see the mall

It’s a nice day trip, especially when you a combine it with a tour of the older parts of the city (which we did a few years back).

Categories: Marco&Niki, Shopping, Utrecht | Tags: , | 2 Comments

The fables of Jean de la Fontaine (Or: Exhibition at the Central Library)

From now through April 1st, there is an exhibition (De Raaf, de Vos en Kornuiten) going on at the Central Library. That translates as The raven, the fox, and his mates. The exhibition covers the work of Jean de la Fontaine, a French fabulist.

The header translates as “A lesson in behavior”. The beginning of the text reads: “A fable is a short story or poem with a moral. The intent is to both amuse you and to teach you something. You can think of the moral as the soul of the fable…”

The fables shown in the library were translated by Rob Scholten while Carlijn van Vlijmen worked on the illustrations.

“The monkey and the dolphin”
“The wolf and the dog”

As mentioned, the exhibit runs through April 1st and can be seen on the first floor of the Central Library, next to the escalators.

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Recycled art (Or: Spotted by city hall)

Check out the art featuring bottle caps in front of The Hague’s city hall:

Bottle cap recycling art before The Hague, city hall, Oct 2018

Another photo:

Bottle cap recycling art, The Hague city hall, Oct 2018

And behind is the construction work for the Spui Forum on Spuiplein (an educational and cultural building — see this Dutch link or English link for more information and photos).

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