The Dutch Maze and Labyrinth Symposium 2011 finished officially on June 3. Outside the provided programme we could find this extraordinary labyrinthine art work.
Tuin van Bezinning
In the park of the police academy in the Huis ‘t Velde at Warnsveld lies the “Tuin van Bezinning” (garden of reflection) called national monument by and for the police in the Netherlands. It is a place where people can commemorate and pay honor to those police officers who have died since January 1, 1946 in the performance of her duty, as a result of violence or an accident. The garden is designed as a place for rest, contemplation and reflection on the fundamental values of the police profession. The garden also serves an important function in the formation and development of police officers.
The design, by the firm of landscape architects Poelmans Reesink, is a labyrinth of raised grass and shell paths. The areas of grass are in the shape of acanthus leaves. At the beginning of the 18th century, Daniel Marot, who contributed to the present architecture of Huis ‘t Velde, also applied the acanthus leaf in his architectural details. The names of the deceased police officers are inscribed along the edges of the leaf shapes. In a digital memorial book till now 140 names are listed and the place of every inscription is marked in a site plan.
A water basin at central place is fed from 12 spouts and the water is conducted to the nearby flowing Berkel.
The official opening was in March 2006. Every year on the 2nd Thursday in June a commemoration ceremony takes place.
The garden is no labyrinth in the strict sense, but the alignment makes it a labyrinth, even more than the already visited “Energy”. Since there is an unequivocal way to the centre. Even if it has several entrances and exits and even bifurcations and dead ends like a maze, nevertheless, it leads in quite a subtle way to the middle. Though the centre is quite a narrow place beside the water basin, it is the highest spot of the whole installation. And if one exactly looks at the steel tins limiting the path and follows her course, one finds unambiguously into the middle. One sees the dead ends in advance and can avoid them while walking to the centre. The steps have a meaning by itself, but are not part of the unequivocal way.
The garden is open daily from dawn to dusk. A big parking lot exists.
Here the interactive map of Google Earth, above all for those who want to visit the memorial. It is not easy to find and also most locals do not know it:
Related links (in Dutch)
The Dutch Maze and Labyrinth Symposium 2011 finished officially on June 3. We prolongated our stay and, besides, have also visited this art work.
Though it is not a labyrinth in the strict sense, however, contains labyrinthine elements. The earthwork in the form of land art with the name “Energy” was created in 1995 from the artist Shlomo Korèn (1932 – ) near Lochem on the waterfront of the Twentekanaal.
It lies on a meadow between the canal and a crossroads; not far away from a steel bridge about the canal and limited by a cycle track, the street berm and a little wood. The main attraction is a steel ball of four metres of diameter which can freely move in water ditches. According to wind direction and frictional resistance it is to be found at different places. The water ditches form an endless loop. There are paths between them, but a section of it forms a long-drawn-out island that can not be achieved.
Here an exploration of the earthwork in a slide show:
Only from the bird’s-eye view the lines can be properly understood. Google Earth makes this possible:
The Dutch Maze and Labyrinth Symposium 2011 was in Eibergen, not far away from the labyrinth built in 2003 by the Scottish land artist Jim Buchanan. He used the square labyrinth design known from a Cretan coin, dated 430 – 350 B.C.
Classical square labyrinth with 3 circuits
The artwork is at the place of the former castle of Mallem from which only the moat remained. In these historical surroundings Jim Buchanan has created the labyrinth by commission of the Rouffaer-van Heek Foundation as earthwork. The plateau covers 35 x 35 m with three right-angled circuits leading to a small circular tower in the centre. The rotunda is half in the earth, but open to the sky. The earth walls are about 1.50 m high, the pathways length amounts to 270 m.
Jim Buchanan was one of the expert speakers at the symposium. At the end of the first day there was a walk to the labyrinth with a special event. He had transformed the small rotunda into a camera obscura.
Here some impressions from the event:
One can perceive the labyrinth very good in Google Earth:
The last station on June 3, 2011 on tour B of the Dutch Maze and Labyrinth Symposium 2011 was the chapel Our Lady in a great hospital at Amsterdam.
View into the chapel
The labyrinth of type Ravenna lies in the entrance area of the chapel built by architect Ba Molenaar in Roman style. It is very difficult to recognise, because it is marked only by roughened lines in the otherwise smooth floor from rectangular sandstone flags. According to incidence of light and point of view one can see the pattern. The engraved surfaces show the way. Most visitors will not note it probably at all. Besides, the lines are very small, so that it is hardly suitable for walking.
View to the entrance
Detail of the lines
Detail of the centre
The next station on tour B of the Dutch Maze and Labyrinth Symposium 2011 on June 3, was the willow labyrinth at IJsselstein. It is situated on the border of a small sea, surrounded by meadows.
The region around IJsselstein is known for her willow cultures and basket-work. Also the Pima Indians in Arizona (USA) have this tradition. They make baskets with a labyrinth pattern of an own kind which is known as “the man in the maze” and round which again legends entwine.
The artist Jan van Schaik was inspired by all that and on the day of the tree in 2003 he created together with 400 children the willow labyrinth from three different cultivars. The province of Utrecht awarded the Natuur-en Milieuprijs to the labyrinth .
Jan van Schaik guided us and told and pointed out all that.
The plan of the Indian labyrinth is slightly changed. The innermost circle is not closed as usually. On the contrary: It is the real centre of the labyrinth. Thereby the normally used (small, dead end-like) centre changes to a sort of antechamber or entry area. In IJsselstein this particularly makes sense, because the middle looks like a tent. The willows which run up upwards form a closed space.
The man in the maze
The meanwhile above head height grown willows form a sort of tunnel system and permit no overview about the alignment of the paths as it is normally possible in a labyrinth.
One feels almost like in a maze because one does not see where the next turn leads to, how far one is away from the centre and in which direction one is walking. One must confide in the path more than usual. Quite a new experience in a labyrinth.
In the interactive map of Google Earth one recognises the labyrinth very well:
The next station on tour B of the Dutch Maze and Labyrinth Symposium 2011 on June 3, was the church labyrinth in Nieuwegein.
In the entrance area on the west side of the neo-Gothic Saint Nicolaaskerk, consecrated in 1875, is a labyrinth about 4 x 4 metres, made of dark and bright tiles. The way is formed by two rows of bright stones, while the boundary line is a row of dark stones. The form is basically square, even if the four corners are “sloped”. In the middle is the Latin inscription: Per crucem ad coronam (by the cross to the crown). The labyrinth has five circuits.
The alignment is adopted from the five inner circuits of the Chartres labyrinth, even if it is mirrored.
The church was projected by the Dutch architect Alfred Tepe (1840-1920); who has sketched the labyrinth, is not known.
From the side
Looking to the entrance
The five inner circuits of the Chartres Labyrinth
The next station on tour B of the Dutch Maze and Labyrinth Symposium 2011 on June 3, was the water labyrinth in Nijmegen.
It was constructed in 1981 by the German artist Klaus van de Locht (1942 – 2003) along the river Waal when the area of the old harbour was rebuilt. The labyrinth is a seven circuit classical labyrinth. The way is built of quarrystones and small water channels form the limitation.
The artist writes about his work:
The spiritual and physical participation of the visitors is a necessary part of this sculpture, the interaction of work and receiver is the aim. This sculptural structure wants to be used, walked, climbed, be felt, … in the true sense of the word wants to be lived.
In this interactive map from Google Earth you can see the labyrinth:
On YouTube there is a wonderful video of the autumnal labyrinth. Please, be patient while looking, it is 10 minutes long.
Here you will find other photos of the labyrinth and introductory words of Klaus van de Locht (in Dutch): Link >
If you click on the website on [terug naar index] you will come to the main page and can still find out a lot more about and from Klaus van de Locht.