The Bospoldervos is now from the city

photo Otto Snoek

On Friday June 12, visual artist Florentijn Hofman delivered his Forest fox definitely on. This makes the ten-meter-high and sixteen-meter-long statue of the city official and part of the Rotterdam sculpture collection. With this striking work of art, which is placed on the Schiedamseweg on the side of Marconiplein, the artist wants to show how nature enters the city. De Forest fox will be festively revealed on July 8, 2020.

Through a municipal assignment to Business Expert, an organization that improves shopping areas, the wish was expressed in 2016 to realize a work of art especially for the Schiedamseweg, in consultation with residents and entrepreneurs. After several presentation evenings and a selection procedure, the proposal of Florentijn Hofman was chosen in 2017. BKOR supervised the process on behalf of the municipality of Rotterdam. The artwork was realized as part of Resilient Bospolder-Tussendijken 2028, a program to improve the Bospolder-Tussendijken neighborhood.

After the final location and the permit were completed, the long-awaited production started in 2019. The 65-ton fox is built from a steel frame, which is then sprayed with concrete. The fox's coat was simulated by sanding the concrete. It was then painted with a durable paint. The striking pink bag finishes it off. This is made of a flexible plastic coating. On the western side of Schiedamseweg, near Marconiplein, there was sufficient space for the statue, which is sixteen meters long and ten meters high.

De Forest fox owes its name to its location (Bospolder-Tussendijken), which recalls a by now invisible past of this area, which consisted of forest, polder and dikes. For Hofman, the Forest fox an ode to nature and to the city: the fox sneaks into the city with a plastic bag in its mouth. But the image also raises questions. Because what is actually in the bag? “Is he going to clean up junk? Or did he do the shopping? ” read here more about the meaning of the fox in an essay by art historian Sandra Smets.

Florentijn Hofman (1977, Delfzijl) likes to play with proportions and scale. This can also be seen in his other work, which often consists of greatly enlarged images of animals. Thus he became known for his rubber ducks, huge yellow rubber ducks, which he presented all over the world. He also designed a 31 meter long straw muskrat and a 12 meter high straw bales sheepdog. Two other works of art by him can be seen in Rotterdam: Black Crow (2006) at the Natural History Museum and Five paper boats (2010) along the quay in Schiemond. It was his most famous Rotterdam (temporary) work Blue House on the Beukelsdijk.

This project was commissioned by the Municipality of Rotterdam. The recruitment and selection were done by the BKOR and Sculpture International Rotterdam programs of CBK Rotterdam, the Municipality of Rotterdam, Business Expert and the Ondernemersvereniging Schiedamseweg. Marleen ten Vergert was involved as district manager BoTu. The construction site process was led by Nicole Majoor (project manager Urban Development Municipality of Rotterdam) with a team from the municipality and Florentijn Hofman, in close collaboration with Hofman's contractor Job Saltzherr. The artwork was financed by the City of Rotterdam and BKOR.


Forest fox