Remembrance Road (#2)

April - June 2015

If you want to keep history alive, you have to excite people again and again. The Remembrance Road art project was a lively, exciting and temporary monument. This second edition could be experienced from April to June 2015 along the provincial road N278 (connection Maastricht-Aachen), between Margraten and Cadier en Keer (NL) ánd along the thoroughfare at Henri-Chapelle (BE). This on the occasion of the annual Remembrance Day (May 4), Liberation Day (May 5) and Memorial Day (end of May).

Remembrance Road subtly reminded road users and passers-by of the liberation and created awareness in a poetic and modest way. The provincial road between Margraten and Cadier en Keer ánd the thoroughfare at Henri-Chapelle provide access to the American cemeteries: The Netherlands American Cemetery and Memorial and Henri-Chapelle American Cemetery. Remembrance Road transformed these roads into a temporary Remembrance (Memorial) Roads: white and apple-green satin ribbons were tied around 386 trees along this 2.5 km long road at Margraten and around 24 trees at the entrance to Henri-Chapelle's cemetery. The white ribbons symbolized the victims of WWII, the green ribbons referred to the Liberation theme of the municipality of Eijsden-Margraten. The ribbons around the trees guided visitors on their way to the American cemeteries. The repetitive character, the symmetrical and ordered pattern (ribbons on both sides of the road at the same height), and the white colors were inspired by the thousands of white crosses that can be seen in the American cemeteries.

Remembrance Road (#2) and Memorial Wall (#1) were part of Liberation Eijsden-Margraten, an anniversary program that did justice to the special fact that everyone in the Euregion has been able to live in freedom for 70 years.

Artist Jonathan Wanders about his installations: "We try to keep history alive through monuments and rituals. But because monuments are built to stand the test of time, they lose the power to actually excite the viewer and no longer attract attention. The same goes for rituals, the two minutes of silence – during the National Remembrance Day - seems to be a matter of checking off. More form than substance. You have to keep people excited to keep history alive and show its relevance by making the right connections."

Celebrate and Remember
To emphasize the "Celebrate" theme, Jonathan Wanders realized a large, colorful flower bed on the lawn in front of the town hall of Eijsden-Margraten (Amerikaplein) in the form of the Liberation logo. To "Remember" people - of the liberation 70 years ago - in a more personal and accessible way, four American liberators were given a face, in collaboration with the project The Faces of Margraten. Together with Remembrance Road, four large portraits were shown along the provincial road between Margraten and Cadier en Keer.


Remembrance Road (#2) (Official Video #1)


Remembrance Road (#2) – from Margraten to Henri-Chapelle (Official Video #2)




Title: Remembrance Road (#2)
Location: Along provincial road N278 between Margraten and Cadier en Keer (NL) and along the thoroughfare (Rue du Mémorial Américain) at Henri-Chapelle (BE) . Publicly accessible
Process: January to April 2015
Temporary experience: April to June 2015
Material: Double-sided satin ribbon, white (wide 100 mm) and apple green (wide 22 mm)
Dimensions: White and apple green satin ribbons around 386 trees (Margraten) and 24 trees (Henri-Chapelle). Margraten: total length 2.5 km, total width: 20 m. Henri-Chapelle: terrain of approx. 140 x 80 m. Ribbons tied at 1.1 m above ground level at both locations.
Client: Municipality of Eijsden-Margraten
With special thanks to: Province of Limburg, The Netherlands American Cemetery and Memorial, Henri-Chapelle American Cemetery, Hanny Wanders-Faarts
Photos: Ralph Sluysmans
Videos: Jozef Houben, Let it Edit
© Jonathan Wanders