For over a year I have been working with Gijs Schunselaar and Willem te Slaa on the exhibition 'Aan de Surinaamse grachten' . A special work process in which I learned even more about my own family history and the Dutch history.
For the first time Museum Van Loon highlights the involvement of the 18th and 19th century Van Loon family in the WIC and Suriname. The exhibition shows the operation of the Amsterdam-Surinamese plantation economy. Based on eight historical characters, from the enslaved on plantations in Suriname to wealthy consumers in Amsterdam, we see a concrete shared history between Suriname and Amsterdam.
Descendants of these historical persons reflect in the exhibition on their and each other's (family) past and give history in general a face and voice in the here and now.
The next step that Museum Van Loon is going to make, continuing this line of more shared history, feels to me like a personal victory with the hope and expectation that all policymakers, institutes and especially museums will together show more about our shared history.
The exhibition is on show from October 5th!
United we stand. Divided we fall.