Heaven Holds a Sense of Wonder

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Heaven holds a sense of wonder (2011)


This statue can be found in the Sculpture Gallery of P. Struycken at Grote Marktstraat and the Spui in The Hague. The base project (40 bases) of STROOM Centre for visual arts, architecture, urban planning and design of urban environment in The Hague.

None of the other base statues is as spiritual in nature and figurative as this statue of Famke van Wijk (1969). Yet it is no ancient religious sculpture which ended up in the image gallery. The sculptor, however, does not shun religion. Nor symbolism. Van Wijk took a bundle of light rays as the basis for her sculpture. Above the center of the rays, symbolizing the light of Christ, she placed a crown. A crown of people waiting full of honor and worship for Christ’s return to earth. This loving, three-dimensional crown stands in stark contrast to the two-dimensional crown of thorns Van Wijk has made of fine line engraving on the top of the pedestal. So the sculptor shows us, through the rays of light, the answer Christ received for his act of love.

Contrasts in materials, such as crude rays and detailed angels are characteristic of Van Wijk’s style. Her theme is usually religious, which has to do with her faith. Van Wijk is a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, also known as Mormons. “I work mainly from dreams, but faith is my real inspiration,” she said in an interview in the Stentor (30-3-2006). Van Wijk occupies a special position amongst the contemporary Dutch sculpture artists which is also apparent from the jury of the Charlotte van Pallandt Award, named after the famous Dutch sculptor (1898-1997). In 2004, Van Wijk received the biennial award to encourage young talented sculptor. The jury ruled that “her work rises above the stylistic, expressive and aesthetic categories which one is known and familiar with at this time. It makes one curious. When the base statue became part of the Sculpture Gallery in January 2011, it received a place across the Nieuwe Kerk on the Spui. A more appropriate place is not conceivable.
Courtesy STROOM Den Haag.

Sandra Spijkerman.