h 250 cm
Haagse Harry is an integral part of a city like The Hague. The father of this typical comic character from The Hague is the artist Marnix Rueb. When he moved to the Schilderwijk, Haagse Harry was born. Harry represents the prototype Hagenees: fearsome, but a good man. Of course with a heavy Hague accent. Rueb drew Harry in a tracksuit and with a mullet hairstyle. Strolling through his city, he experiences countless adventures in which everything and everyone is ridiculed. Rueb provided his comics with phonetically written texts. Read them out loud and you will hear what they say.
Originally Rueb wrote the comic strip for the entertainment magazine DOEN. But the use of language and humour made it so popular that Haagse Harry became a comic strip in its own right. Rueb released four albums of Haagse Harry. When Rueb died of lung cancer in 2014 at the age of 59, both Hagenezen and Hagenaars expressed their grief. Relatives of Rueb therefore decided to create a statue for Haagse Harry as a tribute to the illustrator. They used the money from the Hague Culture Prize, which the municipality awarded posthumously in April 2015.
Bouke Schuemie, artist and old friend of Rueb, made a 3D version of the cartoon character complete with a raised middle finger. Rob Daenen of ceramics workshop Struktuur 68 then executed this design in clay. The ashes of the deceased cartoonist are incorporated in the sculpture. Harry from The Hague is - how appropriate - placed on top of the tram tunnel, which Rueb regularly ridiculed because of the ever-increasing construction costs. Harry's T-shirt bears the text chosen by residents: "Kap Nâh! Lekkâh Belangrèk".
Although Rueb did not speak the Hague dialect himself, he wanted to preserve the city's culture with his Harry. And he succeeded. His cartoon character is forever present in the midst of the city hustle and bustle.