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Projection test for the Names memorial, the room is still empty now. Our Colonial Inheritance

24.05.2022 at 15:17 by Wendy Snoek

Growing steel structures. Growth, what is that?

05.04.2022 at 14:00 by Lucandrea Baraldi


The ideal spot for the Herron. The Voice of Urban Nature

21.03.2022 at 10:33 by Herman Kossmann


Artist Celia Smith installing here birds warm sculpture. Groote Museum

23.02.2022 at 17:02 by Michel de Vaan

Slowly towards the opening on the 8th of February! Our Land

01.02.2022 at 17:34 by Remco Swart

Together with photographer Sander van den Bosch, we are measuring and photographing all floors of the palace. Visitors will soon be walking on 'invisible' carpets, in order to experience the original atmosphere of the rooms as fully as possible. Paleis Het Loo

26.01.2022 at 12:54 by Robin Schijfs


Carefully lifting a python snake skeleton. Groote Museum

24.01.2022 at 14:13 by Michel de Vaan

After all those days at home behind a screen, it is very nice to finally do some hands-on experimenting with projections and different layers of transparent fabrics... Nature

07.12.2021 at 17:33 by Pauline Fer

Work in progress for Museum Sophiahof. In progress…

02.12.2021 at 17:28 by Remco Swart


Work in progress for a children's tour Work in Progress

25.11.2021 at 09:35 by Annika Jacobs


Barefoot in an exhibition? Together with the Stapferhaus, we are looking at what this means for the perception of the visitors... Nature

24.11.2021 at 18:23 by Robin Schijfs

With a few kickoff days (and nights) in the mountains of Switzerland, we have firmly started the draft design for the new Nature exhibition at the Stapferhaus! Nature

30.09.2021 at 11:09 by Robin Schijfs


Cleaning out tree routs before they will be lifted to the ceiling Groote Museum

25.09.2021 at 12:29 by Michel de Vaan

Milling earth elevation minus water from a special foam. Here we show how little drinking water there actually is on earth. Groote Museum

30.06.2021 at 12:04 by Michel de Vaan


Super exiting moment discovering the panels of the « 4 visions on the Anthropocene » box we made for the Vienna Biennal 2021! Work in Progress

12.05.2021 at 12:00 by Lea Chenot


A big empty space, right before installing all exhibits at WeTheCurious! Project What If

01.02.2021 at 12:19 by Ina Meininghaus


Safety vs. functionality: looking for the best headphones to use in a factory Expedition HVC

07.01.2021 at 17:39 by Roel Bolhuis


The new temporary exhibition in House of European History is 'under construction' Fake (f)or Real

07.01.2021 at 17:32 by Tsur Reshef

On view


Our Land

Museum Sophiahof, The Hague (NL)

With the permanent display OUR LAND – Decolonization, generations, stories Museum Sophiahof shows how the Dutch East Indies’ colonial past lives on in Dutch society today. Through personal family stories, you will discover how this past has marked and influenced human lives, and how it continues to do so. The exhibition takes you on a trip back in time, starting today, via the 50s and 60s in the Netherlands, and all the way back to colonial times in the East Indies. We follow eight families from one generation to the next.

The Hague (NL)
Museum Sophiahof
200 m2
Concept, spatial design, graphic design
Femke Bijlsma, Remco Swart, Niels de Jong, Roel Bolhuis, Floor Mulder, Jikke van Giffen
Light design
Heinz Loopstra
Project management
TiMe Amsterdam
AV production, interactives
Koen Caris
Voice actor
Francesca Pichel
The kaleidoscopic Netherlands

Lighting sets the mood in this exhibition. Those who have been to Indonesia might agree that the light there is quite different than the light in the Netherlands. Inspired by this difference in atmosphere, we leveraged the scenography’s light and colour to mirror the families’ emotions. In the first room, today’s Netherlands with all its cultural and political expressions is captured in a kaleidoscopic symphony of image and sound.

Stories that define us

Eight animations created with shadows show how the colonial system permeated every fibre of existence in the second half of the 20th century. The exhibition shows where it led today: the youngest generation shares how their family stories made them who they are. Instead of stigmatising, visitors are invited to take pride in the diversity of their stories. Personal, emotional narration is central throughout the exhibition. Interactive screens, infographics, an audio tour and a booklet provide factual historical interpretation and context.

Racism and kind neighbours

One of the rooms is a chilly, bleak Dutch winter world. This grey setting is the backdrop for the families’ migration stories. Through film portraits, family members describe the cold reception in the Netherlands. While some neighbours were welcoming, the family members also experienced homesickness, racism, and feelings of not belonging in the Netherlands. Beyond this cold reception, fragments of memories from Indonesia are projected onto voile cloths that evoke associations of waves at sea. Why did they leave, and which precious objects they chose to carry along their journey? In the end you learn why family members left their homes.

Shifting perspectives

Everyone looks differently at this piece of history and that often leads to tensions and misunderstanding. To honour the complexity of the living colonial past, we selected family stories that represent as many perspectives as possible. While the stories in this exhibition do not provide a complete picture of the living colonial past, they show how the Dutch East Indies’ colonial past is a story with many faces.