RAAAF / Atelier de Lyon, Deltawerk // (2018). Photo Jan Kempenaers

Deltawerk// (2018)

RAAAF / Atelier de Lyon, 2018

The Waterloopbos in Marknesse is scattered with scale models of marine infrastructure: this is where the Dutch Waterloopkundig Laboratorium used to test the Delta Works, among other things. The largest water project here was wavemaker Deltagoot, an elongated, concrete channel for experiments involving tsunamiforce waves. Today, all of the test models have fallen into disuse and the laboratory has been closed. The Waterloopbos is now a national monument and the Deltagoot has been transformed into the work of art Deltawerk// by RAAAF | Atelier de Lyon.

The Delta Works symbolise the struggle against water by the inhabitants of the Netherlands. Having been transformed into Deltawerk//, the Deltagoot is now a monument to that struggle and to Dutch ingeniousness in matters of water management. It also raises questions about the pursuit of an indestructible Netherlands at a time of climate change and rising sea levels.

RAAAF and Atelier de Lyon have dug out the colossal wave basin; its concrete channel now towers some 7 meters over the visitors. The huge Delta Work-to-scale now rises up from a still water surface. By sawing large blocks out of its concrete walls and twisting and tilting them to visualise the devastating power of the water, the artists have created a rhythm of dropping slabs. Walking over the two new bridges underneath the massive blocks, visitors experience the immense weight of the work. Once inside, they can see the voids between the slabs and the everchanging reflection of the work of art in the water. As years go by, nature will reclaim the work of art and mosses and ferns will take over.

RAAAF | Atelier de Lyon’s Deltawerk// (2018) is located along Voorsterweg in the Waterloopbos in Marknesse in the Noordoostpolder, The Netherlands. Find its address and coordinates here.

Artist: RAAAF [Rietveld Architecture-Art-Affordances] | Atelier de Lyon
Title: Deltawerk //
Unveiling: 27 September 2018
Materials: concrete and water
Dimensions: 250 x 5 x 7 m
Location: Voorsterweg 34, Marknesse
Commissioned by Natuurmonumenten and the Cultural Heritage Agency

Owned by: Natuurmonumenten
Waterloopbos is a National Monument