What is this bookcase doing here?

Jogging along the river Rhine in Bonn this morning I suddenly saw this strange bookcase. Almost like a statue. Photos by Jeroen Laven I stopped for a few minutes to take a look, and to my surprise people came and…

Walls of Incompetence

Padua, 2006. No need for urban regeneration. Just build a wall! They are the city’s ugly face: the walls of fear, walls of shame, walls of incompetence. What started in Berlin, went on in Belfast and Jerusalem. Very recently, it…

CityPoem 8 – Székesfehérvár

Chanting, old footsoldiers.Székesfehérvár CityPoem: ‘Nótázó vén bakák’ by Ády Endre Another CityPoem from Hungary. It is located on a monument at the main square of the Hungarian town Székesfehérvár, once, in the Middle Ages, royal residence and most important…

CityPoem 35 – Prague

Prague, Lennon Wall. During the communist era a place for anti-government slogans. Now graffiti – poems and words of peace by millions of visitors from around the world.Prague CityPoem: the Lennon Wall A wall in Prague: The Lennon Wall,…

Gossip and backbiting

In Bergen op Zoom, a small city in the south-west of the Netherlands, a neighourhood is being transformed. Part of the project to make the neighbourhood better, is art in public space.In the spring of 2006 KidOR (foundation for…

CityPoem 7 – Dublin

A poem on the wall of the Cafe Zanzibar in Dublin.Dublin CityPoem Hot White Walls, Black Shadows.. The Aroma Of Strange Eastern Spices, Bazaar Delights! The Secret of Sandalwood and Cloves. A Sound of Laughter and Music and Drums……

CityPoem 36 – Rome

Romans honouring a hero of the past: the people’s poet Trilussa, who never joined any literary circles, wrote about the everyday Romans, in the Roman dialect.Rome  CityPoem: In the Shadow, Trilussa IN THE SHADOW While I’m reading the usual…

CityPoem 6 – Alhambra

Already around 1360, when Alhambra near Granada was built, poems were integrated in the public realm.Alhambra CityPoemThe walls of the Alhambra are full of calligraphic decoration, cursive and kufic writings with sentences such as “Only God is victor”…

Dragons in Rotterdam

Lost: dragon. Found: new building Photo by Jeroen Laven The West-Kruiskade is thé multicultural street of Rotterdam in one of the more interesting areas of the city (Oude Westen), with a.o. many Chinese and Surinam shops. The street also contains…

Temporary art on derelict sites in Rotterdam

Between the dereliction of an old building and the construction of a new landing, there is a moment of weeks, months, sometimes years that you find wasteland in the city.In Rotterdam the policy in some areas is to offer…

The CAC and other Urban Projects in Valencia, Spain

Imagine being surrounded by the Pompidou Centre, the Sydney Opera House, the Bilbao Guggenheim and the London Eye all in the one beautiful place and miraculously blended into a single coherent array of architecture and form.  That is no less…