Baden Powell (1961) Willem Verbon

BKOR archive
About the artwork

The bust of Lord Robert Baden Powell of Gilwell (1857 - 1941) was unveiled on 5 May 1961 on the occasion of the 50 anniversary of the Rotterdam District of the Association of Dutch Scouts. Baden Powell was the founder of the Boy Scout Movement in 1907 and has visited the Netherlands in 1932. He had been an explorer in the English army and his boy scout movement was based on military principles. In the Netherlands, the Dutch version of the movement was founded in 1911 with Prince Hendrik and General JB van Heutz as patrons. This movement would "lead the youth away from the environment of the dissatisfied and warn her of the socialists and deniers." In Rotterdam the boy scout movement was especially popular in Kralingen. Verbon made a realistic image of the founder in his full-size army uniform in bronze. Unveiled by Peter Termijn and Koos Tjebbes and offered by J. Peters to Burgemeester van Walsum. In the spring of 2015 the bust was stolen from its pedestal.

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About the artist

Willem Verbon (Rotterdam, 1921-2003) attended classes at the evening academy in the 1930s. Immediately after the war, Verbon was commissioned to create a monument in honor of the Royal Air Force. He was offered a post-graduate scholar ship by the British government and left for London for a few years. In the early years of 50, Verbon returned to Rotterdam, where he moved into a studio in the Oranjeboomstraat. Verbon sculpted various statues and monuments for important people from Rotterdam and members of the Royal Family. A lot of his work can be found in Rotterdam.

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