Artwork Data


Reliëf mensen en planten


Jacques van Rhijn






h. 400 cm

Artwork Location


Loevesteinlaan, Den Haag

City district


GPS data

52.052250961255, 4.2789853153137 View on map

Artwork Description


After the end of the Second World War, there was a true building explosion. Because of the devastation during the war and the baby boom that followed, the housing shortage was high. New houses were built at a rapid pace. With the introduction of the percentage regulation in 1951 (1.5% of the building sum available for art), the government encouraged commissions for artists. In those days, the focus was on the decorative decoration of new buildings. This also applied to houses, such as this one on Loevesteinlaan.

Jacques van Rhijn was no stranger to the commissioning circuit, which received a substantial boost after the Second World War. In this district of The Hague, he even embellished three buildings with his ceramic reliefs. Commissioned by the housing association Verbetering Zij Ons Streven (VZOS), he produced façade decorations for two new blocks of houses on Loevesteinlaan. At the same time, the housing association commissioned him to apply decoration to the Saint Anthony's Church on the Leyweg. This implicitly created visual links between the Catholic residents and the church further down the road. Not so strange for a time when the compartmentalisation of our society was also clearly noticeable in everyday life.

What exactly Van Rhijn's reliefs on the blocks of houses represent is not entirely clear. There are, however, human figures, objects from the construction industry and a large number of trees. The latter refer to the growth and recovery of the country after the war. The family was seen as the cornerstone of society. This theme reflects the spirit of the times. The style of the reliefs is also consistent with this: highly stylised, but still clearly recognisable and with an expressionist gesture. Typical of the fifties.