Zeven bewerkte keien
Escamplaan, Tulapad, Den Haag
52.05594871863, 4.2589132823559 View on map
Along the waterfront in the 't Kleine Hout neighbourhood park there are seven boulders. It looks like a composition of ordinary stones, determined by fate. At close quarters, the stones appear to have been manipulated. The question inevitably arises as to whether the composition has come about by chance. The answer is: no.
Arno van der Mark's sculpture consists of multi-sided stones that have been roughly worked. This has given them an apparently natural form. On top of this paradox, Van der Mark piles a second contradiction. He made his boulder sculpture especially for the green and watery location of 't Kleine Hout. Yet the polder landscape is not a natural environment for boulders. The work of art is intriguing, because it seems logical, but is illogical.
In the early nineties, Van der Mark founded his design office for architectural and urban development projects, 'Drftwd'. In his opinion, there was not enough real exchange between architecture and sculpture. His agency works in a 'cross-disciplinary' way. That means that people from different disciplines work together,' Van der Mark explained in NRC, 8 March 2002. They go in unexpected directions. That is where a new utopia begins for me.
This viewpoint in fact also formed the backbone of his artistry. The demarcation of museum objects with screens and drapes in the 1980s should be seen as an investigation into the boundaries of sculpture. A curtain around an artwork prevents a dialogue with the other artworks and the exhibition space. On the other hand, Van der Mark allowed the boundaries between sculpture and its surroundings to blur. The 'Seven worked boulders' is an example of this. The work of art almost disappears into its surroundings. But at the same time, it is strong enough to give the place a special meaning.