Are you aware of how important arable farmers are for your daily meal? The potato weeks in Het Bildt will highlight this with surprising literary projects and events. One fantastic element is a poetic exchange with Valetta, which is the other European Capital of Culture in 2018!
The 2018 potato weeks in Het Bildt are packed with symposia, art projects and events for young and old. The linguistic and literary programme elements are:
In 2018, Leeuwarden and Valletta (the capital city of Malta) will be European Cities of Culture. Leeuwarden and the Bildt have had ties with Malta since as far back as around 1850. Every year, the first potatoes are shipped from the Bildt to Malta around the end of September and the new potatoes – grown from the seedlings – find their way back the same way the following March. Malta and Friesland are also officially dual language and have a wealth of modern and classic poetry, all of which has resulted in a literary poetry project: an exchange of Frisian and Maltese poems.
Poetic Potatoes began with an exchange project with primary schools. In addition to readings and guidance by poets, children also exchange poems. The first poetry written by pupils from Het Bildt was sent to Malta in a container with seed potatoes in September 2014. The answer arrived in March 2015 with the new Malta potatoes. Attractive multilingual teaching materials have been developed and made available to primary schools.
Around 25 artists from ‘the four States of Friesland’ in Northern Europe will be exhibiting in seven potato sheds on the Oudebildtdijk. The art has a direct relationship with the rural environment and is being composed by Anita van Os (Roos van Tudor, Leeuwarden). Visitors will also receive a guided tour of the farms. There is also information about the history of ‘the four States of Friesland’and their different Frisian languages. The exhibition is free of charge.
This large-scale outdoor performance in a field beside Zwarte Haan, with more than 150 players and musicians, is about ‘the desire for more and more’. It is a critical performance about our tendency to squander things. The piece is based on the story of ‘de Bilkert’ Willem van Haren. He lived in around 1700 and was a diplomat, grietman (mayor/judge), traveller and writer and is buried at the Harenskerk in St. Annaparochie. The writer of this spectacular production, performed in the Bildts language, is Bouke Oldenhof, music is by Egon Kracht and the producer is Sjouke-Marije Wallendal, who works closely with well-known Friesian producer Jos Thie.
Various locations in Het Bildt, check the website
Poetic Potatoes: poetry from Friesland and Malta, now until May 2018
Fertile soil: art in potato sheds, 21 June-15 July 2018
Eternal summer: music theatre performance, 29 & 30 June and 1 July 2018
Stichting De Bildtse Aardappelweken (Het Bildt Potato Weeks Foundation), St. Annaparochie