Schürmann fountain (1916) Charles van Wijk & Bon Ingen Housz
Willem Schürmann (1877-1915) was a Rotterdam writer and published, among other things, the novel 'De Berkelmans' (1906) and the play 'De Violiers' (1911). Schürmann was popular at a time when culture in Rotterdam was on the back burner. A century ago, the city was dominated by the explosively growing trade and port. In addition, attention was paid at a modest level to variety, (folk) theater and review. Schürmann's work fitted in with this little bit of cultural interest. He not only worked as a writer, but was also a tailor, so he knew the Rotterdam trading world. He was extremely critical of this in the family novel 'De Berkelmans'. A year later he published a family drama with a contemporary twist about the port of Rotterdam based on the life of Lodewijk Pincoffs, the man who was at the cradle of the modern port of Rotterdam. After Schürmann's early death, it was decided to erect a memorial monument. Some wanted this in the Grote Schouwburg because of his merit for the stage. But others preferred a larger and more public testimony. It became a fountain that stands outside in the city (just like his publications were about the city). Four columns carry a water basin above which was an angel in bronze with a Melpomene mask (Melpomene is the muse of the tragedy, a reference to the serious side of his writings). The margins mention the titles of Schürmann's most important works: 'De Berkelmans', 'Forty', 'Mushrooms' and 'De Violiers'. The angel turned out to be susceptible to vandalism and was later replaced by a flute player by the sculptor B. Ingen-Housz. It stands on four nozzles, representing theater masks from Classical Antiquity.
Sculptor Charles van Wijk (The Hague, 1875 - 1917) attended the art academy in The Hague. Among other things, he made the memorial for the Maris brothers in The Hague, the statue of Johan de Witt and the bust for EJ Potgieter. He won many awards. He mainly worked in The Hague, but also in Brussels and Paris for some time.