From Central Station to Overschie

Welcome to this route that leads you past various works of art from Rotterdam Central Station to Overschie. Have fun!

Or choose your own start and end point!
Choose your destination now!

JH Baas

Speculaasjes (1957)

"Then I'll do it myself," thought assistant JH Baas when station architect Van Ravesteyn told him about the high prices of the famous sculptor Henry Moore, whom he had inquired about. That is why Baas himself made two Moore-like sculptures for next to the entrance. These have been relocated in the current station where they also return as a decorative pattern.

Huib Noorlander

Thomas More (1970)

"One of the greatest problems of our time is that many are educated but few are educated," said the famous 16th-century humanist Thomas More critically, and that is also how he looks at all the students who pass him. In his hand he probably holds the manuscript of Utopia, his description of a political system of a fictional ideal state.

About the Roman Catholic Youth Training School 'Thomas Morus' (1958-1965)
This reinforced concrete school building is designed with a lot of glass. This creates openness and therefore interaction between life inside and outside - important for the youth who have to enter that world. The exterior facades are dynamic, but inside, around a flowery courtyard, they are quiet. Because relaxation is also important. This still applies and that is why the garden around the building has recently been redesigned.

Gust Romijn

Bird flying out (1960)

'One can see something of a bird in it, but also of a budding flower. If you walk under it and look up, it is like bronze glasses to the firmament," said architect Bakema about the Bird flying out from Romijn. This flamboyant man, described as having a 'one-man art life', flew himself to an artists' farm full of greenery and art, on the edge of the city.

About the Montessori Lyceum (1951-1959) of Van Den Broek and Bakema
On this elongated strip along the track, Van den Broek and Bakema could only fit an elongated school building. These concrete-loving reconstruction architects were known for the Lijnbaan, which, according to the New York Times, was the only really new building in Europe at the time. They designed the two-storey school as a long corridor, which becomes narrower towards the end, with all the classrooms attached to it.

Leendert Bolle

Untitled (1940)

This undulating fence, with animal figures in the wrought ironwork, was designed by architect Van Ravesteyn, the master of the curved line. It was topped by rather flat sculptures by sculptor Leendert Bolle. Due to illness he could no longer carve; he drew these animal silhouettes that were executed by others in concrete that had to be coated with gold paint.

About Diergaarde Blijdorp (1937-1940) by Sybold van Ravesteyn
Before the war, the new zoo was already under construction, an elegant strolling location that opened in December 1940. Sybold van Ravesteyn designed it as a collective work of art with many buildings and art, and few cages. He designed every detail, including the logo with the giraffes. Nowadays parts of the park are a national monument.

Han Rehm

Fanny Blankers-Koen (1956)

With a powerful pose, the four-time Olympic champion crosses the imaginary finish line from 1948 here. For a bronze sculpture, the pose actually makes the balance unstable - the sculptor Han Rehm has done this well. Local residents watch over the sports heroine who sometimes suddenly wears a sports shirt. 'Mrs Blankers, we cleaned you up today. You were completely covered in bird poop,” one note reads.

Klaas van Rosmalen

Manneke (1976)

Some art did appear in this hyperfunctional reconstruction building in later phases, albeit with really no mutual coherence. On this bronze Man (1976) as a staff gift, a sculpture made of recycled waste followed: Roteb Eco monument (2011) by Jan Eric Visser. And on the eaves the glorious line of poetry Cities do not hide when it rains (2013) by Joseph Brodsky in the green of the Rotterdam corporate identity.

About the Office and Workshop of the Municipal Transport and Motor Service (1951-1954) of Van den Broek and Bakema
Tight, no fuss, people keep working. This is how Van den Broek and Bakema designed the post-war Netherlands, starting in Overschie. They also made the company workshops for the ROTEB from modern, sleek concrete and with shed roofs: Cleaning, Disinfection, Transport and Fire Department.

Jan Eric Visser

Roteb Eco monument (2011)

This Roteb service building, designed by Van den Broek and Bakema, was in need of a makeover. The sustainably renovated building was opened on October 5, 2011, together with the unveiling of this work of art by artist Jan Eric Visser. The sculpture is made of waste material and used objects. The foundation is a concrete staircase, the base is made of rubble building blocks. On top of that, a skeleton of 90 bicycle frames welded together and a drainage system made of recycled waste plastic, allowing grass to grow on top of the sculpture.

Observatorium

That bend (2011)

Martin Bril wrote a poem about how the Rotterdam skyline suddenly reveals itself in the bend of this highway, which was translated into this highway sculpture by the artist group Observatorium. In doing so, they anticipated the future of the square, when it is no longer in use for traffic and it could become a park for peaceful strolling.

Kleinpolderplein - museum for orphan sculptures (2012)

Hidden under the highway is a small sculpture park for orphaned sculptures that have been displaced by developments in the city and needed new shelter. A number date from the reconstruction era, just like this flyover. With the fifteen pedestals they form a brutalist-looking museum of discarded progress, which serves as a water basin in case of emergency.

About the Kleinpolderplein traffic intersection (1967-1971)
The Ruit om Rotterdam, a ring road system of 41 km, includes the Van Brienenoord Bridge (1965), the Benelux Tunnel (1968) and this traffic circle. Constructed in four height levels from prefab concrete elements, it cost the equivalent of €50 million – much more than budgeted. It was finished on time and was appreciated. Het Vrije Volk wrote: 'The viaducts and underpasses on the new Kleinpolderplein swing.'

Joan Bakker

Birds (1959)

Abstract art? No. This image consists of two stacked birds flying away from each other. The line of the bodies continues into the tails. Happy and enthusiastic, students from the associated school had painted it in bright colors, but that was not the intention. That layer of color is gone, it is now painted gold. As a result, we still do not see the original stone color.

Lucien den Arend

Divergence (1975)

After reconstruction, buildings continued to be decorated with art, but it became more businesslike and abstract. It also broke away from architecture. This meant that this minimal art object, which was previously located elsewhere, could be effortlessly moved to this new square. There it gives its new environment a touch of understated elegance.

Henk de Vos

Hand and head (1959)

"If you want to make something, you have to leave Rotterdam," said Henk de Vos, a world traveler who returned to the reconstruction and found a lot of work there. His large reliefs contain simple and elegant shapes. A useful and solid art, because he believed that in assignment situations you had to give up 'your experimental urges'. This natural stone relief, literally and figuratively a gesture, gives depth to the architecture of the then girls' school. Unfortunately it is in poor condition.

About the 6th Industrial School De Starrenburg (1954-1959) by Lockhorst, Koldewijn and Van Eijk
This industrial or domestic school was designed with both theory rooms and cooking and sewing rooms. It was built according to a new idea, the hall type: a central hall connects all functions in the school, bringing people together. The hall served as a meeting space, an auditorium, and a space for activities such as dance lessons. After the school left, several temporary businesses moved in.

Kees Timmer

Dog (1960)

This cheerful playset dates from the era before rubber tiles, when concrete objects on schoolyards were not yet considered a danger to knees and baby teeth. Kees Timmer chose animals over people and depicted them as a warning against industrialization and businessization. Unfortunately, the climbing dog is now behind a fence, just like the caged animals that melancholic Timmer often painted.

Henk Sutterland

Memorial Overschie '40-'45 (1955)

'H. Sutterland's design rejected again', Het Vrije Volk reported in 1955 and the 'For those who fell' committee in Overschie was at the end of its rope. The municipal architect had been submitting plans for years. Money was available for an eight-meter high memorial needle - also rejected. After he replaced it with a travertine column with a bronze flower box, the authorities approved it.

André Volten

Mikado (1975)

This image for the airport was delayed due to the many discussions – too expensive, the airport was making a loss. That is why Volten, a renowned artist, designed the tubular plastic from separate parts to be sure. Then it could easily be moved in the event of bankruptcy. It depicts descending and ascending air traffic but employees, fearful for their jobs, labeled it an 'example of a collapsing airport'.

About the Zestienhoven Airport Building (1956-1970) by municipal architect J. Bister
To replace the Waalhaven airport, destroyed during the war, Zestienhoven airport opened in 1956 at the insistence of Rotterdam port barons. Then 1966 brought an extended runway, 1967 an airport building, 1970 a station building and then mainly debate and protests about closure due to financial losses. Yet Rotterdam The Hague Airport remained open and became a popular place to watch planes over a cup of coffee.

Joop Hekman

Untitled (1952)

In addition to color, the architect also wanted relief in the facades, which is why Joop Hekman designed these stones. Fish were a popular reconstruction motif, as an expression of a harmonious life between people and nature, even in the city or between companies. The fish cast in concrete swim furiously around the corner, towards the future.

About the Becramming and Cannemanstraat housing construction (1951-1952)
Architect LJ Linssen designed these 2 low-rise neighborhoods for the Housing Department, 425 homes in total. Artist Luigi de Lerma provided them with yellow stripes and colorful doors and niches. Inside, the houses were comfortable, yet they were called shoeboxes and even 'dark dominoes' by Het Vrije Volk. In 1993-94 they were renovated quite rigorously with plastered facades, plastic window frames and flashy new entrances.

Diet Wiegman

Monument to liberation and reconstruction (1995)

To mark fifty years of freedom and reconstruction, Diet Wiegman created this monument together with six primary schools. From the front it is an apartment building, sleek and neat. But then this seems to crumble again because the back is rough, like a cave or archaeological find - or like decay. Wiegman loved contradictions and the sense of cycles and changeability.

JH Baas

Speculaasjes (1957)

Read more

Huib Noorlander

Thomas More (1970)

Read more

Gust Romijn

Bird flying out (1960)

Read more

Leendert Bolle

Untitled (1940)

Read more

Han Rehm

Fanny Blankers-Koen (1956)

Read more

Klaas van Rosmalen

Manneke (1976)

Read more

Jan Eric Visser

Roteb Eco monument (2011)

Read more

Observatorium

That bend (2011)

Read more

Kleinpolderplein - museum for orphan sculptures (2012)

Read more

Joan Bakker

Birds (1959)

Read more

Lucien den Arend

Divergence (1975)

Read more

Henk de Vos

Hand and head (1959)

Read more

Kees Timmer

Dog (1960)

Read more

Henk Sutterland

Memorial Overschie '40-'45 (1955)

Read more

André Volten

Mikado (1975)

Read more

Joop Hekman

Untitled (1952)

Read more

Diet Wiegman

Monument to liberation and reconstruction (1995)

Read more

Instruction

You have come to the end of this route. We hope that you have seen many works of art and that you will use another route. Bye!