Diverse beelden tuin Raad van State
Paleisstraat, Den Haag
52.081980964384, 4.307689990213 View on map
From his wedding day in 1816 until his coronation in 1840, Crown Prince Willem II lived with his Russian wife Anna Paulowna at Kneuterdijk 22. Their White Palace included a huge garden complete with birds, greenhouses and orangery. Originally, the land ran far beyond the Mauritskade. Later, large parts of it were sold. What remains is an inner-city sized palace garden.
Whereas the original park was laid out in a romantic English style, the later smaller garden was designed in the French style in the 1950s. The symmetrical layout with geometric patterns and tightly clipped hedges is reminiscent of gardens at palaces such as Versailles. Since 1982, the buildings on the Kneuterdijk have housed the Council of State. When the buildings were redesigned and newly built in 2011, landscape architect Michael van Gessel restored the straight, clean lines of the garden design and added a third to the two lawns.
In the course of time, more and more statues were erected in the French garden. The first was the sundial. A sculpture by Wessel Couzijn followed in the early 1980s. In line with the commission for a new double portrait of the Royal Couple for the portrait gallery on the Parkstraat side, Eric Claus was also asked to make a selection of his sculptures for the garden. In 2018 he placed eleven sculptures. Two years later, five more sculptures were added.
Most people know this contemporary classical sculptor mainly for his monumental homage to Willem Drees senior, which has been erected since 2000 next to the entrance to the Binnenhof. In the monument you will recognise the abstract, almost graphic style that Claus also uses in his many medals, while the free sculptures in the garden show much more variation in form and theme.