October 7, 2010 § Leave a comment

By Liesbeth Takken. (Pictures by Haitske van Nus, Sarah Fitzsimons and Liesbeth Takken)

Creation of heaven and earth, development of mankind, inspired by northern (and southern) mythology were my themes for AnyQuestions? on Mandoe. Influence of planets on island, beach and inhabitants. Actual current political statement too.


As I said, my preparations and study produces works for a month. Life is a compromise. After years I’ve got more and more the experience that you have to prepare always, to exercise, to study, to think, to draw, to design. Then you have to let it go, set it free, and be aware and awake to catch the moment to create, or even creation manifests it selves. Without preparation you would miss. Without evaluation too.

The first days I was struggling a bit with the tide, after a week I was working with it. So the next waddenproject would be welcome! I’m especially satisfied with unexpected founded objects, unexpected meetings with visitors, inhabitants, helper’s en master class-students. Thanks Kjelt for great helping and meeting. And artists and their cross points with my work. Researchers and organizers. Special thanks to Haitske: you were a great assistant! Without your help, sounding board and sense of humour it would have been more difficult. Thanks to all to bring me this experience. And last but not least thanks Mandoe! I miss you since back home…

On our way back home we suddenly pass the Nolde Museum. I turn on my wheel 180 degrees. We look at his Ungemalte Bilder. It refers to my Unmade Makes this week. I’m glad there’s something left to work on!






…let there be light….


…and had written into the earth…


…and looked back…

Liesbeth Takken, September 2010


Adorante, 9/11 and ritual fire

September 26, 2010 § Leave a comment

By Liesbeth Takken. (Pictures by Haitske van Nus, Sarah Fitzsimons and Liesbeth Takken)

Today is our last working day. Saturday again. We’re making three works altogether. First I make an Adorante on the highest dune near the circle work: the womanlike rock carving that adores the sun. With a cup mark between her legs.

It’s Saturday. There are a lot of people visiting the island and the festival. Everyone is coming to look what we’re doing and asking. They’re really interested. Dario is playing flute, walking from the Adorante to Sarah’s house.

After we’ve laid the Adorante on the dune, it’s very high tide. There’s no beach anymore and water is filling even the path. It’s nice that the circles under the water are still there. Dario noticed every time that the sea is really carefully with my work. It’s not destroying it. Nice spoken.

We find a little place to make our work about the Twin Towers. A sand tongue at seaside. We have to work very quickly because the water is still rising.  It’s 9/11 today. Joseph Beuys’ visionary work Cosmos und Damian had brought me to this idea.

In the surrounding we make little cup marks. With coins for elves. They transform in black holes. Tearing off everything. In the middle there are two twin towers as anti-material form. We put the coins in it. I photograph them as high tide comes. Sea’s taking the coins: my offer for Mandoe.

Cosmos und Damian repeated – 9/11 – anti-material. Anti-form.

In the evening we organize a finishing party at the beach at my sandcirclework. With ritual fire-performance. Because of high tide we make it into the water. An old dream comes true: making fire into the water! I build up a big wooden boat in it; Kjelt sets fire to it, like a naughty boy.

Sarah and I make a cross point: she changes her house into circles of different size. With the sticks Sarah and I hold up one circle in the air. Dario plays music in it, walking around with the circle. Danka continues on violin. I make some meal circles on the ground. Kjelt dogs love it! A group of young Danish women are singing beautiful songs. Haitske is filming it all. She’s got stuff for a documentary as well. Peep behind the scenes of Mandoe during Any Questions? Hope she’ll manage. Thanks to all!


September 21, 2010 § 2 Comments

By Liesbeth Takken. (Pictures by Haitske van Nus and Liesbeth Takken)

Friday. Freia’s day. Morning meeting; sketching. The reality is that I have to do different kinds of practical things today. First working on computer for photos, writing and blogging. Then we have to leave our house. House moving takes some time with all our stuff. Because I find stones every day the car becomes fuller en heavier every day. Hopefully I’m not sinking into the Wadden when leaving…

We go to the places we’ve made our Ymir’s. Wind had turned so there’s much more water than the last days. We take some pictures of the Ymir’s. The big circle drawing has also filled with water when we arrive.

Kjelt, an inhabitant of the island, is going to help us to take a lot of wood at the beach. Because of the fire I will make tomorrow night. With tractor and his two dogs we go there, shaking and almost falling, and take plenty of it. It’s an exciting experience. Afterwards he offers a drink. He’s a man from 72 and had moved all around the world. He speaks good English with American accent. He lives alone in his simply house without television; he doesn’t like that machine, prefers reading books. I read Papillion on one book back. I have a very special talk with him.

This morning I wrote about my work here, the influence of sun and moon, the meaning of time, the living with the riches of nature, to work in gratefulness. Kjelt is telling us about the fact people don’t have time anymore for important things. They only want to make money. They don’t live with natural time. He tells he lived with the Indians and learned a lot of them. It’s only allowed for them to take animals when they’re hungry. Before they kill they send the sun their gratefulness and ask if they can take one because they are hungry. They adore the sun and the moon instead of God or Allah. Since then I always do the same before killing an animal, Kjelt says. ‘People think I’m crazy but for me it’s the only right thing to do’. Kjelt is an artist to the backbone.

After meditation concert of the Czech musicians (wonderful relaxing!) in the barn Kjelt is coming: we have to come quickly. Because of high tide you can take unique pictures from the road, filled with water. We go there, come a bit too late: water is leaving already. He explains what the influence of the moon on the tide means for the people who live here. Again the same I wrote. Although I didn’t asked him we really come close to each other’s opinions. I’m so glad I met this man. The work of today is the meeting with this man! Social sculpture: ‘…making the invisible visible…’.

At last Kjelt is taking us for a trip to special places on the island.

While eating Dario’s fish soup I find some special fish skeletons in it. There’s a viking boat on one of them. We take some pictures, nice strange.


September 17, 2010 § Leave a comment

By Liesbeth Takken. (Pictures by Liesbeth Takken and Haitske van Nus)

Thursday:  I want to make ‘rock carvings’ far away on the wad. At low tide we walk through the rest of the water en look for a place to start. It’s a really big open sand plate. The wind is very hard today. We feel like on expedition. Nova Zembla. But warm.

We’re looking to find the little sand drawings made by nature and….find them! That’s our starting point. Around we start on drawing in the way of the free signs we’ve found in the sand and on the stones. Like ‘écriture automatique‘; I often do exercises like this when I work with children too. It slowly changes into scribbles, little figures and boats. It’s a present that the underground had a special anthracite-black colour.

At last I create a big figure, Ymir-like, inspired by old carvings. Ymir is a giant in de northern mythology (Edda), which means ‘boiled clay’. Out of his body earth is created, out of his skull sky is created. It’s discribed very plastic.

Ymir – ‘ziedende klei’

‘In oertijd was het dat Ymir leefde

Geen zand geen zee geen zilte golven

Er was geen aarde noch evenmin inzicht

En gras nergens’

‘Of old was the age | when Ymir lived;
Sea nor cool waves | nor sand there were;
Earth had not been, | nor heaven above,
But a yawning gap, | and grass nowhere.’


September 12, 2010 § Leave a comment

By Liesbeth Takken. (Pictures by Haitske van Nus and Liesbeth Takken)

Today the television is coming. They interview Sarah and me. I want to complete the outher circle of the big sanddrawing before. Because of high tide  that was not possible until now. We’re lucky it’s low water at the moment.  I only have one hour to finish. Petr and Klaus are coming to help us fortunately. It’s hard working to dig in the wet sand. We draw and dig the fine circles also. It’s good working when you are with some more people! We follow  and photograph the work at changing  tide.

Today at 17.00 the earth and the moon are as closest as possible. It makes special forms in the sand, like claws. In the starconstellation lowe dominate: you can see it also these days in the sandforms the water has made. We photographed them every day.

The interview with the television was ok. But actually it’s complicated to express your specific ideas in another language. Good exercise. At half past seven it’s in the news on the national canal. Helen is cheering, we too. Wow!

Rock Carvings

September 11, 2010 § Leave a comment

By Liesbeth Takken. (Pictures by Liesbeth Takken and Haitske van Nus)

Today I’m giving a workshop to a group of pupils/students from Rosborg Gymnasium. I’m starting with an introduktion about landart, my own work, and ancient rock carvings. You can find them all over the world. I show them especially many pictures from Scandinavian carvings. I’ve made them in Sweden; this spring we discovered a big rock with carvings by ourselves!

People created since they were there. People drew already before they were writing. It’s like a basic need; something that makes us human beings.

The several times I gave this workshop, I discovered that everyone is appealed to this in a way. Because it’s about our common history: it belongs to all of us.

These pupils, mostly girls, are also really enthousiastic and concentrated on their sanddrawings. They make sometimes archetypical signs. They use sand, white pebble stone, cokes and salt powder. It was very nice to work with them: thanks a lot!


September 7, 2010 § 2 Comments

By Liesbeth Takken. (Pictures by Liesbeth Takken and Haitske van Nus)

Would the tide take my work at night? It didn’t. It only played with it. Today, I changed some things. I dug the innercircle, so that it became rough and threedimensional.

We found a gift from nature again; drawings on stone, similar as nature’s sand drawings. I can use this tomorrow, when I work with a group of pupils. Rock carvings will be the theme: but nature is presenting them too! (sic! Walter).

I am starting a dialogue with wind and sun and shadow today. Rhythm is created. Poetic rhythm. But shadow reminds me also of the Twin Towers; it’s almost 9/11.

We make a first try for tomorrows rock carvings with the pupils. Ymir?

Dario is coming after sunset to make some music on self-made instruments in the circles. It’s really a special opportunity to have the possibility to work together with musicians in my landart works. It fits somehow.