Public Art. Amsterdam

BOLD TOREN BOUWMATERIALEN

Strike a Pose – Wafae Ahalouch

Amsterdam, the magic center, art and counterculture 1967-1970

Schip van Slebos

De Appel

Het Bankje

Het Raam

De Oude Kerk

Het Stoepje

Licht

De Brug

De Brug

Ruimtestructuur

Het Zandkasteel en de Amsterdamse Poort

How to Kill a Tree, Edward Clydesdale Thomson

City Cells

Nelson Mandela

Monument tegen Apartheid en Racisme

DOE IETS / DO SOMETHING

Spanje Monument

De Muur

Gedenkteken Steven van Dorpel

De Grote Glijbaan

Yellow Wings

Dolle Mina

Man en Schaap

Hortus Botanicus

Portrait of Jan Pieterszoon Coen, J.L. Vreugde

Anton de Kom

Now, Speak!

Tayouken Piss

Monument Bijlmerramp

Sequin Monument

Mama Aisa

Zonder titel (Twee Schuine Naalden)

Nationaal Monument Slavernijverleden

Monument for Martin Luther King

Gloei!

Voor de Bijen

Industrieel Monument

The Black Archives

Tussentijd

Corned Beef

Sami

Brace for Impact, Node #6

Untitled (You Don’t Have To Be Here)

Staalmanplein

Wegwerphuisje

Groot Landschap

De 7 poorten

Klimmuur

De Kies

Black Waves

Tectona Grandis

Stapeling omlaag

Animaris Rhinoseros Transport

Tuinen van West

De Poort van Constant

Fietstunnel station Amsterdam CS

Noordbeeld

NDSM-Werf

Ontmoetingsplaats

IJ boulevard

ADM monument

De Ceuvel

NDSM-Werf

Observatorium

De Ceuvel

Gedenkteken Ataturk

Twee Beelden

Sunday Seminar Pay Attention Please! curating the city

Official Opening Pay Attention Please!

De Kost en de Baat

Van Eesteren Museum and Aldo van Eyck’s climbing frames

Constructie met I-balken, André Volten

Mirage, Tamás Kaszás

Rembo, Bastienne Kramer

Untitled, Margot Zanstra

Horse Chestnut, Amok Island

2 U’s naar buiten / 2 U’s naar binnen, Carel Visser

Opstandingskerk, Marius Duintjer

Cascoland

WOW Amsterdam

Leonard van Munster, Under Heaven 02

Lex Horn, Concrete relief Hendrik de Keyser

Het Wiel, Jeroen Henneman

Herbert Nouwens, Brettensuite

White Noise

De Wachter

Feestelijke Beelden (festive sculptures)

Your Life is Calling

Untitled

Primum movens ultimum moriens

11 Rue Simon Crubellier

Lady Solid

Opgelichte Stoeptegels

Ode to Mungus, Menhir Tower and Spire

Untitled (Hildo)

The First Turk Immigrant or The Nameless Heroes of The Revolution – Framer Framed

Amsterdam, the Magic Center Art and counterculture 1967-1970, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam

Monument for the White Cube – P/////AKT

Monuments to the Unsung – Framer Framed

wild care, tame neglect – Frankendael Foundation

GET LOST – art route, several artists

Ode to the Bijlmer – CBK Zuidoost

Untitled (You Don’t Have To Be Here) – De Appel

We should have a conversation (2018) – De Appel

Fiep van Bodegom

Roos van Rijswijk

Alma Mathijsen

Massih Hutak

Chris Keulemans

Rashid Novaire

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In the early months of 2018 a small statue of Martin Luther King suddenly popped up here on Kattenburgereiland. It is one of fifty identical statues with which the artist Airco Caravan pays tribute to individuals, institutes and locations that continue the mission of Martin Luther King – the dream of a world without racism – fifty years after his assassination. The National Slavery Monument, the Monument against Apartheid and Racism, and the statue Dock Workerin East Amsterdam, where the silent procession for Martin Luther King once began, are among those locations honoured with one of these statues, while the Tropenmuseum and The Black Archives are among the institutions. There is one of the statues in the South-East Amsterdam art route next to the statue of the Surinamese freedom fighter Anton de Kom, while in the city centre another graces the statue of Multatuli, whose 1860 novel Max Havelaarwas already a protest against the oppression of the population of the Dutch East Indies. Gloria Wekker received a statue for her research on racism in the Netherlands, and Sylvana Simons for her political contribution.

Caravan wanted to remain anonymous, ‘ring the bell and run away’, but she had to reveal her identity to be able to donate the statues. The totality of fifty statues forms a magnificent monument to Martin Luther King, not in the form of a memorial statue, but as a monument that honours those places where his ideas live on today, places where human rights are central and are defended.

The statues are not an award, Caravan emphasises. She worked intuitively and donated the statues to progressive, critical institutes and individuals for whom she has a lot of respect. For her, statues too play a role on the way to the world that King envisaged. ‘I have learnt a lot from this project. I cannot simply pronounce the words ‘Golden Age’ aloud any more. Our history needs to be told in a really different, more complete way. And statues certainly contribute to that! It is a tangible element that is seen and the various statues that stand in Amsterdam already tell a clear story, which I have been able to bring up to date with my own little statues.’

What was the figure of Martin Luther King doing here on this location without a monument? It was here that the slave shipLeusdenwas built on the De Eendracht wharf in 1720. The Leusdenmade some ten slave voyages for the Dutch West India Company (WIC) from the Netherlands via the former Dutch Gold Coast (present-day Ghana) to Surinam, carrying an average of 660 slaves per voyage. On 10 March 1737 the Leusdensailed from Texel on its last voyage. Seven hundred enslaved persons were embarked in the Dutch Gold Coast. Shortly before arriving in Surinam, at swimming distance from the shore, the ship struck a mudbank. Reportedly fearing a revolt, the crew sent their human freight into the hold and battened down the hatches. More than six hundred drowned imprisoned in the hold. Sixteen survivors were sold on the shore, the rest were written off as lost cargo, an economic blow to the company. The media devoted no more than a brief item of shipping news to the disaster and the biggest shipping disaster in Dutch history virtually disappeared from memory. There is no monument to it in the Netherlands or Surinam.

Do we erase history when we replace controversial street names and monuments? Or have we already erased part of it? Caravan: ‘The biggest shipping disaster in Dutch history – you ought to learn about that at school, shouldn’t you?’. ‘The Black history of the Netherlands is a question of Black and White, it is our shared history’.

You can find here more locations and information about the Monument for Martin Luther King.

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