h. 250 cm
Reigersbergenweg, Den Haag
52.09333000829, 4.3504391742299 View on map
A quick google search for sculptor Jan de Baat quickly brings up 'Het Peerd van Ome Loeks', the figurehead of the Groningers in their city. In The Hague there are two lesser-known sculptures by De Baat: Object' and 'De Klamper'.
De Klamper' was actually made for Clingendael, but when the neighbourhood residents had no need for it, it was enthusiastically 'adopted' by the residents of Mariahoeve. The stainless steel sculpture with its two angular wings and pointed shapes owes its name to its relationship with the Klamper, a collective name for daytime birds of prey such as the buzzard and the kestrel. These types of birds are regularly spotted in the nearby Haagse Bos.
Although 'De Klamper' is geometric and abstract, this does not imply that it is also clear in its design. The lack of clarity is caused by all kinds of additions such as the sharp points and various openings. Each side gives a different appearance.
The capricious, baroque approach is characteristic of much of De Baat's abstract work. At the end of the 1960s, he presented his work with a number of colleagues under the title 'Baroque Abstraction'. The aim of the exhibitors was to integrate the various disciplines into a 'Gesamtkunstwerk'. Their studio 'Beeldend Bouwen' functioned as a kind of research workshop and De Baat called himself 'visual builder'.
If you know the figurative 'Peerd van ome Loeks' (1957), it is surprising that De Baat made such abstract work a short time later. His early work was often disparaged, while his abstract work was better appreciated. The artist, too, was more comfortable with his new style. He even wanted to replace 'Het Peerd', but by then the Groningers had become attached to it. Although 'De Klamper' is not as prominent as 'Het Peerd' for the northerners, for the inhabitants of Mariahoeve it is a valuable sign in the neighbourhood.