Exhibitions@WURLibrary

Art on Wageningen Campus

About this exhibition

Wageningen University & Research has always been interested in and committed to the visual arts. In the past, artworks were installed to mark the unveiling of new buildings or to commemorate a special occasion or event. Many of the works relate to one or more of the domains of WUR. When Wageningen University & Research developed a campus most artworks were moved to new locations on Wageningen Campus.

Science meets heritage

Enjoy the exhibition Art on Wageningen Campus. You can use the maps to locate the artworks. The tour starts with ‘The Sower’, at the right side of the Atlas building.  Have a nice online tour on Wageningen Campus!

A Rose of Steel was taken by António Valente

De Zaaier / The Sower, August Falise (1926)

De Zaaier / The Sower, August Falise (1926)

The symbolic meaning of The Sower is evident to all who pass it. The work, based on a design by Wageningen artist Auguste Falise (Wageningen, 1875-1936), was unveiled in 1926 on the square outside the main building of the former Agricultural College in celebration of its 50th anniversary. Falise described his design as a ‘…symbol of the blessing spread by the Agricultural College…’

The Sower is believed to have been modelled after Benjamin Spee, who worked at the Agricultural College. Falise initiated and designed the statue but did not sculpt it himself. He created several works for the university, including a plaque of Professor Aberson and a bust of Professor Ritzema Bos.

In 1990 The Sower was relocated to the entrance of the new administration centre on Costerweg. The statue was relocated again in early 2012, when the centre moved to the Atlas building.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Genesis, Liggend teken / Genesis, Sign in Recline, Norman Dilworth (1993)

Genesis, Liggend teken / Genesis, Sign in Recline, Norman Dilworth (1993)

This sculpture was purchased at the 1993 art festival ‘Beelden op de Berg’ in Wageningen. The sculpture was originally located on the lawn across from the Boeslaan until March 1998, after which it was relocated to the entrance of Wageningen Plant Sciences Experimental Station at Voorburglaan 5.

This steel sculpture has angular horizontal and vertical features and is self-supporting.

Nature was an influential driving force behind the work of Norman Dilworth (Wigan, England, 1931- ). As he wrote in the catalogue for the ‘Beelden op de Berg’ exhibition: “Here at Wageningen, the analogy my work makes with natural development is easily seen and in the way that the sculpture, once the ground rules have been laid down, is allowed to generate itself.” The steel sculpture is now located on the east lawn of the Atlas building.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Actaeon onder de sterren / Actaeon under the Stars, Iris le Rütte (1995-1996)

Actaeon onder de sterren / Actaeon Under the Stars, Iris le Rütte (1995-1996)

Iris le Rütte (1960- ) is part of a group of artists who play with recognisable forms in a figurative but not altogether realistic way. Her work is more fairytale-like and combines human and animal forms. It can be found throughout the Netherlands.

This sculpture reveals a split image: a deer with human legs. The front and back seem to be moving in opposite directions. The work was inspired by a Greek myth described in the narrative poem Metamorphoses by the Roman poet Ovid. The hunter Actaeon is transformed into a deer by Diana, goddess of the hunt, as punishment for spying on her as she bathed naked in a spring. However, in his new form he is tracked down and killed by his own hounds.

The statue was created in 1995-1996 for the Department of Human and Animal Physiology. Actaeon under the Stars is located at the back of the Atlas building, near the Mansholtlaan.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Landschappelijke vormen / Shapes in Landscapes, Erzsike Mari (1985)

Landschappelijke vormen / Shapes in Landscapes, Erzsike Mari (1985)

Erzsike Mari (Csongrád, Hungary, 1945 – ) is a Hungarian native who has lived in the Netherlands since 1971. She studied at the Academy of Fine Art in Arnhem. Her work is characterised by primary shapes and the strength of the material used.

This statue features three folded steel zigzag shapes in blue, yellow and red. The shapes are between 2 and 4.5 metres long. The statue was made in 1985 for the open-air exhibition ‘Beelden op de Berg 4’ in Wageningen. It was then purchased by the former Agricultural College. It was originally installed near De Nieuwlanden building at Nieuwe Kanaal 11, which housed four chair groups in the field of soil and water management. The statue was restored in early 2016 and can now be found on the east side of Atlas.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Driepuntig beeld / Triangular Statue, Hans Ittmann (1960)

Driepuntig beeld / Triangular Statue, Hans Ittmann (1960)

Sculptor and painter Hans Ittmann (Waalwijk, 1914 – Amsterdam, 1972) was a member of several artists’ associations and his work can be found throughout the Netherlands. After studying art in Paris, he spent a year working with the artist Ossip Zadkine. His style developed from figurative to abstract, as can be seen with this black shape resting atop a white concrete base.

The artist called this work Triangular Statue, which is quite a fluid description of the shape. It resembles a gesturing three-fingered hand. The statue was originally installed in 1960 at the entrance of the new Dreijenborch building at Ritzema Bosweg 32A, which was formerly the Department of Agronomy. The work has since been relocated to the lawn between Atlas and Orion.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Bijenzwerm / Swarm of Bees, Mirjam Oskam-Van Beekum (2009)

Bijenzwerm / Swarm of Bees, Mirjam Oskam-Van Beekum (2009)

Mirjam Oskam (Arnhem, 1944- ) studied at the Royal Academy of Art in the Hague in the 1960s. She draws, paints, sculpts and develops projects. Having lived and worked in Bennekom for many years, she has participated in several editions of the Bennekom initiative ‘regional Kunstroute 14 Karaats’. For the Wageningen Eng art route in 2009 she created a smaller version of her Swarm of Bees.

The structure consists of a five-metre-long recycled lamppost topped with a fan-like shape made of bent steel representing a swarm of bees that moves in the wind. Swarm of Bees is a crowdfunded work of art that was presented on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of Wageningen University & Research in 2018. It can now be found on the south-west side of the Atlas building.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

De dans van de spijspotten / The Dance of the Cauldrons, Bas Maters (1987-1990)

De dans van de spijspotten / The Dance of the Cauldrons, Bas Maters (1987-1990)

The seven spherical cauldrons that once stood near the Administration Building at Costerweg now rest, slightly tilted, on the lawn behind Atlas. With black mouths agape, some of the cauldrons seem to have a quizzical look about them. The bronze patina on these cast aluminium shapes have weathered nicely over the years. Sculptor Bas Maters (1949-2006) was known for his many public sculptures and large-scale environmental projects. In this sinuous group of identical shapes, whose tilted positions lend them an air of individuality (hence the word ‘dance’ in the title) image and environment form a harmonious whole. The word ‘cauldron’ and the accompanying image is easily recognised by many agrarian cultures and is quickly associated with one of the life sciences of Wageningen University & Research.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Veritas existentiae / The Truth of Existence, herman de vries (2015)

Veritas existentiae / The Truth of Existence, herman de vries (2015)

The internationally renowned artist herman de vries (1931-) represented the Netherlands at the Venice Biennale in 2015. In the Rietveld Pavilion, he presented multiple works as part of the exhibition ‘to be all ways to be’. One particular work, this stone from a quarry near Venice with the text veritas existentiae engraved in gilded letters, was placed near the entrance to the pavilion. This text refers to a key concept in the work of French philosopher Pierre Gassendi: ‘the truth of existence’ is hidden in the objects around us. De vries’ work is often inspired by nature and natural processes. Herman de vries studied at a state horticultural school in Hoorn and worked as a botanist/analyst from 1961 to 1968 at, among others, the Institute for Applied Biological Field Research (ITBON), a predecessor to Wageningen Environmental Research. A work he created for ITBON in 1968 is now on permanent loan at the Rijksmuseum. Veritas Existentiae can be found on the lawn near the Orion building.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Must Leave, Vagn Iversen (2018)

Must Leave, Vagn Iversen (2018)

An enormous water beetle, the Dytiscus marginalis, takes flight over the pond between Orion and the Forum, his wings illuminated at night. The water beetle symbolises the diversity of the campus community. The idea behind the sculpture: societies are just like ponds. Sooner or later, problems force people to migrate. That’s why the water beetle has wings. Migration creates tension but is also a catalyst for innovation. Must Leave is an ode to the many internationals who enrich the campus on a cultural, scientific and philosophical level. This work of art was created by Danish sculptor Vagn Iversen (1951- ), known for his hyper-realistic installations, in collaboration with Wageningen Professor of Aquatic Ecology Marten Scheffer on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of Wageningen University in 2018.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

De Wageningse boom / The Wageningen Tree, Sjoerd Buisman (2008)

De Wageningse boom / The Wageningen Tree, Sjoerd Buisman (2008)

In front of the colossal Forum building, centred underneath the large ‘Forum’ sign at the entrance, a tree-like statue with a realistic bark pattern and three tapering branches stands atop a cylindrical concrete plinth. In 2008, Wageningen University celebrated its 90th anniversary. To mark the occasion, the Wageningen University Fund gifted this piece to the university. This thirteen-metre high tree is made of cast aluminium. It was designed by Sjoerd Buisman (1948- ), who sought inspiration from nature. The tree was made by applying a moulding compound to a real tree, allowing it to set, and then using it as a mould to cast an aluminium shape. A small bronze model of this statue serves as the trophy for the Dissertation Prize awarded annually by the Wageningen University Fund. The Wageningen Tree is one of the largest sculptures by Sjoerd Buisman.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Een Roos van staal / A Rose of Steel, Rob Logister and Marie Raemakers (1996)

A Rose of Steel was taken by António Valente

A Rose of Steel was created by Rob Logister (1959- ) and Marie Raemakers (1959- ) for a farm and sculpture tour through Zonnemarie, Zeeland in 1996. The work is 6.5 metres long and approximately 2 metres high. It was unveiled by the secretary of Wageningen University Theo Theijsse on 17 November 1997 at its original location: the field near the Taxonomy building in De Dreijen Arboretum. In 2010 it was relocated to the south side of the Forum building.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Tectona grandis, Marinus Boezem (1993)

Tectona grandis, Marinus Boezem (1993)

A stack of ten rounded stone discs with inscriptions of the Latin names of trees. The edges were left rough and the surfaces were polished smooth. The inscribed tree species are: Larix laricana, Catanea sativa, Tillia cordata, Populus nigra italica, Cedrus atlantica, Fagus silvatica, Quercus ilex, Fraxinus ornus, Platanus orientalis and Tectona grandis. The latter is a teak tree, which can grow up to forty metres high. The sculpture was purchased at the exhibition ‘Beelden op de Berg’ in 1993. With the incorporation of both wood and stone, artist Marinus Boezem (1934- ) offers a subtle nod to the past (which brings us fossilised trees and animals) and the future (which can transform wood into a fossil). Similar discs of the same name can be found on Ecuplein square in the Osdorp district of Amsterdam. Larger slabs of wood can be found in Wageningen near the entrance to the Plant Protection Service on Geertjesweg. Tectona grandis can be found on the south side of the Impulse building.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Zum Schlafen Gehen / Going to Sleep, Stefan Strauss (1993)

Zum Schlafen Gehen / Going to Sleep, Stefan Strauss (1993)

This arched sculpture consisting of seventeen blue perspex windows installed in a steel frame is lit from below by a spotlight. It is 260 cm high and 230 cm wide. The diagonal base is made of two blue steel tubes, each five metres long. This work of art by Stefan Strauss (Germany, 1957- ) is titled Going to Sleep. The steel object was installed in 1993 at the edge of the Duivendaal site in the centre of Wageningen. In 2016 it was relocated to the lawn between the Nexus and Actio buildings on the western side of the campus.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

De appels der Hesperiden, Vruchtbaarheid / Fertility, Nic Jonk (1967)

De appels der Hesperiden, Vruchtbaarheid / Fertility, Nic Jonk (1967)

A bronze sculpture of stylised dancing women, the Hesperides. One of them clutches apples under her arm. According to Greek mythology, the Hesperides were three or seven nymphs who protected a tree that produced golden apples. The statue, cast in dark bronze, was created in 1967 by Nic Jonk (1928-1994) and installed on the lawn outside the Actio building.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Stolsel (Fossiele vormen) / Clotted (Fossilised Forms), Carel Kneulman (1966)

Stolsel (Fossiele vormen) / Clotted (Fossilised Forms), Carel Kneulman (1966)

This sculpture by Carel Kneulman (1915-2008) consists of several dark, interconnected and roughly hewn shapes, including a fossilised bird and perhaps the outline of a reclining human figure. Kneulman is considered one of the great sculptural innovators after 1945. His most famous work is Het Lieverdje from 1959, which was made famous by the Provo counterculture protests on Amsterdam’s Spui square in the 1960s. The statue was relocated to the lawn on the west side of the campus, along the bus lane.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Keramische Fries / Ceramic Frieze, Henk Tieman (1980/2018)

Keramische Fries / Ceramic Frieze, Henk Tieman (1980/2018)

Ceramic Frieze was created in 1980 by Henk Tieman (1921-2001) for the Biotechnion building on De Dreijen campus. It consists of grey, hand-formed tiles, some of which are thicker and with a different profile than the rest, causing them to protrude from the base. The ceramic was made by the Delft earthenware factory De Porceleyne Fles, where Tieman worked for years. This monumental work of art was integrated into the architecture of the Biotechnion building. During the demolition of the building, it was not possible to remove all sixteen panels without damaging them. Jan van IJzendoorn was therefore commissioned to design six panels that did justice to the original idea: the transition from simplicity to complexity. The panels were encased in rusty COR-TEN steel and relocated to the west side of the campus. Together these objects form two slightly offset braces that create an orthographic perspective.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Staalplaten-kunstwerk / Steel plates, Gerard Walraeven (1979)

Staalplaten-kunstwerk / Steel plates, Gerard Walraeven (1979)

Along the western edge of the campus, behind Vitae, stands a large, curved, rust-coloured steel form. Some of the surfaces are covered in moss and the big steel plates have been bent in a way that makes them look flexible. The front of the artwork is open and bent forward. This piece could be described as a kind of applied art, as Walraeven (1942-2010) was commissioned by the Government Buildings Agency to ‘further shape the ventilation ducts in the outdoor areas using visual resources.’ Walraeven used stone, stainless steel and COR-TEN steel, and formed these hard materials into remarkable curves and folds.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Batara, Anne Holtrop (2013)

Batara, Anne Holtrop (2013)

‘Batara’ is Arabic for ‘cutting away’ or ‘carving’, which is a method used in building. Batara was created for the latest edition of the exhibition ‘Beelden op de Berg’, held in the Belmonte Arboretum in Wageningen in 2013. It is located near the pond behind Zodiac. Holtrop (1977- ), an Amsterdam-based architect and artist, drew his inspiration for Batara from the famous tombs of Petra in Jordan. He decided to build a ‘pavilion’ of irregularly shaped walls made of foamed concrete that was moulded in holes in the ground. The result is a cave-like construction. The foam concrete weathers and crumbles under the influence of the elements. This cannot be prevented or repaired. Batara will therefore eventually collapse. Wild roses have been planted, which will surround the (future) ruin, but also protect visitors from falling chunks.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Man met stier / Man with Bull, Willem Berkhemer (1965)

Man met stier / Man with Bull, Willem Berkhemer (1965)

Man with Bull was created for the ‘Schoonoord’ Institute for Livestock Research (IVO) in Zeist. It was removed from its base in 1995 and relocated to Lelystad. In 2015, it was added to the Wageningen Campus art route. Artist Willem Berkhemer (Jakarta, 1917 – Bilthoven, 1998) has more works of art in Wageningen, such as Apexes, which is located outside the Atlas building. Man with Bull, a colossal 23,000 kilogram sculpture made from artificial stone and pebble concrete, was given a prominent place on the field near the Zodiac building.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Bloemkelk en sterrenhemel / Calyx and Starry Sky, Vinh Phuong (1993)

Bloemkelk en sterrenhemel / Calyx and Starry Sky, Vinh Phuong (1993)

This sculpture depicts a tobacco flower. A perforated tobacco leaf (having succumbed to a virus) served as the now absent shield. The calyx resembles an old-fashioned gramophone horn. The sculpture was created by Vinh Phuong (1959- ) for the new Botanical Centre (De Banaan) near De Dreijen Arboretum in 1993. It was relocated in 2010 to the field on the western side of Impulse.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Nine Gates to Heaven, Janneke van Dijk (2007)

Nine Gates to Heaven, Janneke van Dijk (2007)

A lotus is rooted in mud and reaches upwards, towards heaven. The lotus root was the inspiration behind Nine Gates to Heaven, which Janneke van Dijk (1944- ) designed for the pond near the bust of Linnaeus in the arboretum on De Dreijen. The dimensions were specifically tailored to this location. The idea behind Nine Gates to Heaven came about in the run-up tot the 300th anniversary of the birth of Linnaeus, the Swedish botanist and biologist who established the practice of binomial nomenclature of organisms. This cross-section of a lotus root reveals the cellular structure – the nine ‘black holes’ that symbolise the unknown and the unexpected. The statue can now be found on the western side of Helix.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

De Ploeger / The Ploughman, Willem Reijers (1954)

De Ploeger / The Ploughman, Willem Reijers (1954)

This imposing sculpture carved from light limestone once adorned the IMAG building on Mansholtlaan (Institute for Mechanisation, Labour and Buildings). Following the demolition of the building, the gable stone was placed atop a low concrete plinth on the west side of Wageningen Campus, on a green lawn with other sculptures from the university collection, to the west of the Helix building. A ploughshare rises up to the left, the figure of a man faces out on the right, and the middle is dominated by gears and other technical attributes. Perhaps Willem Reijers (1910-1958) intended to highlight the human and technical side of farming.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Portalen / Portals, Tim Hoving (1987)

Portalen / Portals, Tim Hoving (1987)

Near the northern entrance to Wageningen Campus (on Bornsesteeg) are three tall, frame-shaped steel portals that symbolise the campus gates. The largest portal is approximately 7 metres tall. The portals are surrounded by four wedge-shaped concrete blocks in the grass. As a whole, this work of art by Tim Hoving (1957- ) symbolises a gateway and serves as a transition from everyday life to the world of academic research and education.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Fytodendron / Phytodendron, Margot Zanstra-Wilgenburg (1990)

Fytodendron / Phytodendron, Margot Zanstra-Wilgenburg (1990)

This white geometric work of art dates from the time when the quarantine station (‘Q-Station’) of the Plant Protection Service was housed in the Unifarm building. The artist explained that she chose this open shape as a counterpart to the closed nature of the Q-Station when she presented the prototype.

Margot Zanstra (Laren, 1919 – Amsterdam, 2010) was a was a double talent: she was previously a well-known dancer and choreographer with the National Ballet. In 1976 she exhibited her aluminium sculpture Intertwiner III at the first edition of the ‘Beelden op de Berg’ exhibition in the Belmonte Arboretum. Her work often features geometric figures. “I like logical structures with variations… The best part is that it’s different every time you see it; it’s never the same on all sides.” In 1991 she received a special award at the Henri Moore Grand Prize Exhibition for a work of art in Japan. Unifarm, part of the Plant Sciences Group, can be found on the north side of the campus.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Liggende figuur (De Arenlezer) / Reclining figure (Gleaner), Cor van Kralingen (1963)

Liggende figuur (De Arenlezer) / Reclining figure (Gleaner), Cor van Kralingen (1963)

A reclining man examines the underside of some leaves. Known as the Reclining Figure and later as the Cleaner, this sculpture by Cor van Kralingen (1908-1977) was installed in 1963 near the Laboratory for Insecticidal Research (LIO) at Marijkeweg 22 It depicts a person examining a plant for insects and disease. In 2009, the sculpture was relocated to a different spot on Wageningen Campus: the Radix building, which is part of the Plant Sciences Group.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Groeibeginsel / Life Reborn, Chris Elffers (1962)

Groeibeginsel / Life Reborn, Chris Elffers (1962)

This bronze sculpture was dubbed the ‘Blue Dragon’. From the top of a dark, rounded, bluish body with leg- and arm-like protrusions, a head seems to emerge. The theme of the two-part sculpture by Chris Elffers (1926- ) is change (in agriculture), which creates new life. Until 1995, this sculpture stood on the grounds of the ITAL research institute on Keijenbergseweg, between Bennekom and Renkum, before being moved to the Radix building.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Knielende vrouw / Kneeling woman, Fri Heil (1954)

Knielende vrouw / Kneeling woman, Fri Heil (1954)

Since 1954, this statue of a kneeling woman by Fri Heil (Surabaya, 1892 – Oosterbeek, 1983) has adorned the façade of the former CILO (Central Institute for Agricultural Research) building on the campus road that is now known as De Elst. The woman can be seen kneeling while harvesting a cornfield. She holds a fruit or other object in her hand, the grain visible in the background. The statue is approximately 150 centimetres high and 120 centimetres wide. This work of art was installed on the lawn in front of the Radix building.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Vleermuizenwal / Bat Cave, Krijn Giezen (1998)

Vleermuizenwal / Bat Cave, Krijn Giezen (1998)

Krijn Giezen (1939- ) is known for transforming locally collected garbage and waste into landscape art. With Bat Cave, the idea was to recycle the surplus building materials used to construct the Lumen building. But the design sketches and material proposals weren’t received with enthusiasm. It simply wasn’t considered art. Yet art it certainly became, in 1998. A cave was carved into the western face of the 25 metre by 250 centimetre embankment, its wide mouth protected by a steel grate with big openings. Only surplus paving materials were used to create the work of art. The artist created this ‘bat cave’ as a shelter and hibernation place for flora and fauna. It is located just north of the Gaia/Lumen building, near the experimental plots.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Zaad / Seed, Aart Rietbroek jr. (1970)

Zaad / Seed, Aart Rietbroek jr. (1970)

This sculpture was made in 1970 by Aart Rietbroek jr. (1929-1985) for the newly built forestry testing station De Dorschkamp in Wageningen. The artist was commissioned to create a decorative piece in line with the 1% scheme. When commissioned, the chief government architect gave instructions on how to treat the Javanese teak. Unfortunately, at the mercy of the elements, this protective layer has largely eroded, leaving the wood in a poor state. The statue has since been restored and can now be admired on the north side of Lumen, behind the pond.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Fuga (V-vormen) / Fugue (Profiles in V), Ubbo Scheffer (1989)

Fuga (V-vormen) / Fugue (Profiles in V), Ubbo Scheffer (1989)

Fugue is the Latin word for flight, but in this case refers to the musical term denoting polyphonic music in which a theme constantly appears and disappears. Ubbo Scheffer (1925-1998) expressed this through two converging L-shapes, one in wood and the other in stone. Scheffer’s talent was two-fold: in addition to sculpting, he also had a passion for music; a passion reflected in his sculptures and one he shared with his cousin Marten Scheffer, professor of Aquatic Ecology at Wageningen University. The statue was originally located outside De Dreijenborch building on Ritzema Boschweg. It can now be found outside the Lumen building on Droevendaalsesteeg.

More info at: WUR Image Collections

Photography

The photos of almost all artworks were taken by Guy Ackermans, photographer for Wageningen University & Research and several other organisations. For more information, visit his website

The photo of Een Roos van Staal/A Rose of Steel was taken by António Valente. Find more work of António Valente in the collection Light on Campus.

Sources

“Do you want to see more of our beautiful collections? Go to WUR Image Collections

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