Sculptures of an Exhibition
Door Kees Vlak type 43 en thema
This composition was commissioned by the village of Midden-Beemster to commemorate the 375th anniversary of the polder of the same name. It was premiered in august 1987 by the Beemster Fanfare Band. On this occasion some twenty sculptors were invited to create a work of art. Those sculptures were set up at the most picturesque areas of the polder. On a 40 km long bicycle route one can admire the curious statues wile enjoying the beautiful scenery as well. The compostition is based on two themes: a main theme and the promenade theme.
1. Introduction: After the grandiose presentation of the main theme, on the dominant, we leave the village to the sound of some pretty music.
2. Promenade and Watchman: After some time, we discover a dark statue hidden in the bushes; it is shaped like a square standing on one of its corners. It is called “Watchman”. We hear the promenade theme as a solo and all next themes will be variations.
3. A Building of Willow-trees: Far away on a dike, we discover the huge skeleton of a kind of house. It is a construction of skilfully interwoven willow-branches. The musical themes are also interwoven. The sculpture is called “Construction of wood used by the farmers”.
4. “Die Flüsse, ah die Flüsse”and Promenade: We continue our trip and see now a horn of plenty, made of brown ceramics and set up on the green slope of an old fortress. The sun shines on the sheep being at pasture under the willow-trees. No doubt, this scene will have something to do with abundance.
5. Cardplayers in front of the Nightingale: A statue in cast iron, representing two carplayers, has been erected in front of the windmill called “The Nightingale”. This sculpture suggests a rather animate atmosphere. The opponents with the trumpets and the trombones suggest the cardgame. The trumpets are constantly changing from players. At a certain moment the trumpet gets hold of the decisive trick and starts a victorious blow. The trombone, however, repeats this shout of joy with quite some perverse delight and in a completely wrong pitch. The game continues and after a climax all cards are finally thrown on the table.
6. Autumn and Promenade: The trip now brings us a white sculpture in ceramics, decorated with some autumn leaves. Is this a seated man or a chair? Anyway, it looks very nostalgic. This is the time for a moment of reflection with the oboe or the saxophone. It is called “Autumn”.
7. The Powerlifter: Somewhat hidden in a ditch, we discover a small statue in cast iron, representing a powerlifter who is going to give way under the weight. The music uses the main theme with powerlifting euphoniums, saxophones and clarinets.
8. The Bull: Here we have another cast iron sculpture, but this time it is a really powerful figure. This “Bull” statue uses the same theme as that of the powerlifter, but it gets a stronger foundation from the bass insturments.
9. Mirror and Promenade: While strolling alongside the channel we suddenly see four mirrors. They not only reflect themselves, but also mirror in the water of the channel. These reflections are suggested by the use of tuned percussion. The promenade theme is also used in mirror image.
10. Reflictions or…?: On top of the dike we have a nice view on a farmyard with its orchard. A very big net, coverd with sparkling tin plates, has been stretched between the trees. This sculpture is called “Reflections of …?. Of what? Yes, of course, reflections of the times when the polder was a lake and the sun was reflecting in the wild waves.
11. Willpower: Finally we discover a big statue in cast iron. It is not clear whether it is a man or a woman. Anyway the enormous bundles of muscles in the legs and the thighs are striking. This sculpture is called “Willpower”. The idea of determination is musically suggested by a very long preamble to the promenade theme in one great stringendo, leading to the conclusion of the trip.
12. The beautiful country: Here we have the most beautiful picture. The magnificent Beemster Polder in bloom. We see a nice windmill with decorated wings. We hear the main theme, now on the tonic.