Untitled (1956) Pete Shoemaker

photo Otto Snoek
About the artwork

In the reconstruction period after the war, many office buildings were built on the Blaak and Westblaak. In 1956 Levensverzekeringsmaatschappij Amstleven opened this office building at Westblaak 4-12. The design is by architect ir. Harry Nefkens (1918-2018), who probably commissioned artist Piet Schoenmakers to make a number of facade reliefs. Schoenmakers made 30 reliefs with symbolic representations that refer to trade, harbor and fertility, for example. The facade ornaments are not all different. The reliefs are applied in an elegant pattern on blue-green fluted ceramic plates. Shoemakers would also have made a relief for the entrance hall (source: Platform Reconstruction Rotterdam). Today this office building is a municipal monument.

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About the artist

Piet Schoenmakers (Roermond, 1919 - there, 2009) was a versatile artist and worked with graphics, ceramics, glass, steel, copper and concrete. In the late 1930s he studied at the National Academy for Visual Arts in Amsterdam. In 1941 he was awarded the Prix de Rome which gave him the opportunity to travel through Italy, France and Morocco. He also worked as a designer for the St. Joris ceramics studio in Beesel, Limburg. In 1984 he exhibited his paintings for the first time in the Stedelijk Museum Roermond.

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