Train in the Netherlands

The Netherlands was the fifth country, where Stichting De Blinde Schilders initiated the manifestations and happenings related to the europartrain. It was meant to feel like a home play.

At the time the artists arrived in the Netherlands, the NS (Dutch Railways) unexpectedly stopped their cooperation. The train, somehow in exile, had to wait for alternative transport on the private terrain of DSM (large chemical factory in the south of The Netherlands). We made plans to shift all the carriages by big trucks on the road from there to the bridge in Amsterdam. Fortunately, the Dutch Ministry of Transport supported the europartrain and suggested Strukton, a privatised local railway company, specialized in building and maintaining rail infrastructure.

Strukton did cooperate and took care of the transport to Hoorn. Here the artists were anxious to start the workshop. Also the Austrian carriage was ready to leave Vienna, but was brought to a halt, due to faulty information. The working title 'territory', was ever so relevant. Group dynamics were stimulated in the introduction days to increase understanding of different mentalities and cultures. Then the actual creating began. As the artists changed locations of carriages they found workable solutions to exhibit together. The different ideas and working processes of the individual artists appeared to be a good stimulus.

The late arrival of the Yugoslavian artists was due to the war situation in Kosovo. The Dutch Embassy in Belgrade couldn't issue any visas for the Yugoslavian artists. Their arrival finally succeeded because of the help from our former co-organiser Art Phalanx in Vienna and the Austrian Embassy in Belgrade.

In all the previous places, the train could be reached by visitors in the Central station, platform 1. Not in Amsterdam. Yet, with the blessing of the Dutch State Secretary for Culture, Mr. Rick van der Ploeg at the Amsterdam opening and the large amount of media coverage was making up for the alternative placement of the europartrain on the Westerdok-bridge.