The Uprooted Tree next to Arnhem Central Station
At Arnhem, the uprooted tree will resonate with the city and the transitions it goes through. At the same time I will go back to the autobiographic basis of this work, my own uprooting, when I lost my father as an eleven year old boy. Uprootedness and mourning have taken a central role in my life ever since. In my journey I learned that also migrants get to deal with mourning, because they’ve lost their motherland and everything with it. A human being is defined by its surroundings and builds his identity by it. Immigration can mean loosing the safety of ones own identity.
At the same time inhabitants of mostly poorer areas have seen their surroundings change in radical way too, through immigration. They lost their social surroundings in which they were rooted too. So there is mourning too. It is time to acknowledge this more broadly, for both sides of the story. In Arnhem there will be extensive cultural programming around the theme of immigration, uprootedness and mourning.