ROTTERDAM, 21 August 2023 – A vibrant mural has been unveiled at Watertorenweg, marking the centenary of Volkskracht, a gesture that adds a touch of artistry to the city's landscape.
A line from a poem by Moze Naél, previously revealed at Hofbogen in June, adorns the mural. The artwork, located near Watertorenweg, was crafted by artists Thomas & Jurgen, commissioned by Volkskracht in collaboration with the Opperclaes artists' collective.
An ode to Rotterdam
The poetic line, displayed on the 28-meter-high wall of the Mazesteyn senior complex in the De Esch district, was penned by Moze Naél to commemorate Volkskracht's 100th anniversary. The poem reads:
Waar we altijd voorwaarts,
waar geen weg meer terug.
Wanneer jij weer windje tegen,
wij dat duwtje in je rug.
Which translates to:
Where we always move forward,
where there's no way back.
When you face headwinds,
we give that push to your back.
Collaboration with residents
The mural, designed and executed by Thomas & Jurgen, holds a significant position in De Esch. Linda van der Vleuten from the Opperclaes artists' collective emphasized the importance of community involvement due to the mural's residential location. “We presented the artwork plans to around 25 residents and engaged in discussions with them. Based on the community's feedback, we modified the sketches. The residents appreciated being involved throughout the process.”
A gift to the city
The artwork stands as a welcoming sight for anyone entering the district, whether by foot, bike, or car. Jacqueline Frima, Chairperson of the Stichting Bevordering van Volkskracht, mentioned that, similar to the poem unveiled at Hofbogen in June, this poetic line serves as a birthday gift to all Rotterdammers.
Realize your dream
In celebration of its centenary, Volkskracht is inviting Rotterdam-based organizations to submit their visionary plans for the city. These submissions could win prizes ranging from one hundred to 250,000 euros. Entries are open until 31 August via their website. An expert jury will shortlist the submissions, and around two weeks later, Volkskracht will invite 75 applicants to pitch their dreams on 22, 23, and 30 September. The grand award ceremony, where cash prizes will be distributed, is scheduled for Wednesday, 4 October.
How to get there
Directions to Watertorenweg Located in the heart of Rotterdam, Watertorenweg is easily accessible by public transport, bike, or on foot. The area is known for its vibrant community and artistic flair.