A giant water beetle, Dytiscus marginalis, will fly from the pond between Orion and Forum. The sculpture called “Must Leave” was created by Marten Scheffer with the Danish sculptor Vagn Iversen, known for his hyper-realistic installations. At night, the beetle will be lit up by fibre optic lights located in its wings. On 16 May, this eye-catching installation will be unveiled on campus with music and the largest potluck in the history of Wageningen.
At 17.15 on 16 May, music will be played at various buildings on campus to invite the campus residents and interested people to the bridge over the pond between Orion and Forum. There Louise Fresco and Marten Scheffer will explain the meaning of the new sculpture for the campus and the water beetle will be unveiled in all its glory. Marten has specially written an “Ode to Diversity” that will be performed by our choir and two orchestras.
Party: Potluck & Music
After the unveiling we will have a '100 dishes' potluck held in a festival-like setting with music and dancing. We will celebrate together. The plan is simple:
- Bring a home-cooked meal from your own culture and share this so that we can all enjoy an incredible variety of delicious dishes. We will combine our event with the potluck event of ISOW and IxESN, let them know what dish you will be bringing.
- If you have one, please bring along a musical instrument for the jam sessions that will take place (in addition to the performances) and feel free dance along to the rhythms.
At 19.00 the annual Van Uven music festival of WSKOV and De Ontzetting will be held at the entrance to the Forum. You can sign up before 9 May to join the Van Uven Festival.
The idea behind the beetle
The water beetle is a gift for the centennial birthday of Wageningen University & Research and is a symbol of the source of diversity of the campus community.
It occurred to Darwin that he found the same freshwater animals across the world. Darwin's theory: Sooner or later animals in puddles and ponds were forced to migrate to a better place due to drought or other problems. That is why this water beetle has wings. Scheffer: "Societies resemble ponds. Problems force people to migrate sooner or later. That creates tension, but is also a catalyst for innovation. Steve Jobs’ father migrated from Syria to the US, Baruch Spinoza’s parents came to the Netherlands as political refugees from Portugal. The piece of art is a tribute to the many internationals who enrich our campus culturally, scientifically and philosophically.”
Why a piece of art? Both scientists and artists are interested in identifying essential questions about the world around us. "While scientists attempt to answer such questions, artists merely bring them to our attention. This is not insignificant, because often a question lasts longer than the answer. Good art surprises, stimulates, and helps us to find beautiful questions.”
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Eye-catcher on campus
Due to its spectacular nature and the central position, the sculpture will become a spot for selfies for the thousands of international and Dutch guests and students Wageningen campus receives each year. Much like the successful IAmsterdam installation on the Museumplein, the image will thus spread across the globe.
Rumor has it that the beetle will come to life on June 21 at 12.07 o'clock.