The work of art

An initiative of students and alumni of the Mijnbouwkundige Vereeniging (MV).

The start

The idea of a work of art for the Mijnbouwkundige Vereeniging came into mind in January 2018. Janneke and Renske, two girls in the board of MV at the time, thought this was an amazing project to work on. They got in touch with LandArt Delft with help of Birgit de Bruin, whom helped the MV in the past with the organisation of a Master orientation trip abroad and with setting up a new Master’s course. Jacob Fokkema, Honorary Member of the MV, is also in the board of LandArt Delft and so we got to know the company quite well. After a few meetings with Jacob, Birgit, Janneke and Renske, they decided to create a work of art they would show the continuity of the Earth and the importance of maintaining the Earth in the past, present and future. Not only for our own study, but for everyone who lives on and in symbiosis with our Earth. At the end of the academic year, Jeanne joined the project and we decided to give it a real go.

In November 2018 we got in touch with Jan Dirk Jansen, dean of the faculty of Civil Engineering and Geosciences and Honorary Member of the MV. He had the idea to take the remembrance window from our former faculty at Mijnbouwstraat 120 to the current faculty. This was unfortunately not possible, and also the creation of a duplicate would not level up to the original. Creating a new work of art was therefore the right alternative, and this seemed to be the ideal situation to bring two initiatives together into one work of art for the MV. Jan Dirk Jansen joined the growing team, and with this group of people we set the underlying meaning to be the following:

Two themes are most important in this work of art.
                The first theme is continuity. The continuity of the Earth, the existence of the Earth and the use of the Earth and her vulnerability. People should live on the Earth in a harmonious way and not damage her, because we don’t just live on the Earth but with the Earth. Also, the continuity of our study association and her traditions. Just like the Earth, the Mijnbouwkundige Vereeniging has a rich and very relevant history that our students and alumni carry along. The association has many traditions that are still relevant these days and we strive to keep these alive in the future. This is how our association is maintained, by her traditions and her past. We will thereby also remember the history during the Second World War and the victims that have fallen. Not only from ‘Het Noorden’, where Jan Garos let people stay illegally, but also many Delft students, and especially Mining Engineering students, worked on lots of illegal works during the Second World War. The largest percentage of TU students that have fallen were Mining Engineering students. The stimulating example of Professor Mekel must have contributed to this. It is therefore not a large surprise that the Department of Mining Engineering was the first to get back to work again after the ‘purifications’ that were done by the TU after the war.
                The second theme is layering. This theme is easily linked to the layering of the Earth, but also reminds us to the layered thinking and layered education at our study. Our association has an extensive history, but we also need to think about how times are changing and thereby also our study and association.

By combining these two themes, we believe to create a beautiful work of art.

Cooperations

The idea of the work of art was formed in cooperation with Jacob Fokkema and Birgit de Bruin and thereby with LandArt Delft (LAD). LAD is a cocreation of the TU Delft and has a very wide experience with artists and the creation of works of art and educative projects. Thereby they have extensive expertise in the realization of projects of this kind of scale. They facilitate materials, artists, logistics and much more. One of the artists that they worked with in 2018 was Toshitaka Nishizawa. He is a Japanese artists and a highly appreciated teacher at the Tokyo Academy of Art. Toshitaka  can create art like a true engineer and he sets his ideas into materials and art with endless respect and curiosity for the materials. He can create a balance between the nature, different materials and traditions, just like in his Japanese culture. We got in touch with Toshitaka* with help of LAD and he will be the artist of the MV work of art.

Progress

As soon as it became clear to us that the work of art would be realized, a mail has been sent out to the alumni BLMV to inform them about the project and to ask them for their input. We received lots of comments and we would like to thank the ones that responded for their great ideas, compliments and the time you took.

From this e-mail we also received some options for the stone that would be used for the design. Some of the initiatives were a granite stone and a stone that would take CO2 out of the air, but these were unfortunately not possible because of this size of the project. People their enthusiasm to our e-mail and during the 50 years Barbara Drinks on June 7th 2019 was very motivating to us. We really appreciate interested people to keep in touch with us!

Because it was not possible to make use of a stone that was proposed by our alumni, we chose to purchase a block of marmer. LAD has helped us with this. The marmer is 3.5×2.0x1.2 meters big and weighs about 25 tons! A design has been made by the artist in correspondence with the themes of the work of art. This design has been approved and you can see it below.

Sketch design by Toshitaka Nishizawa
Work in progress by Toshitaka Nishizawa at LandArt Delft in summer 2018